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Warsaw's Royal Castle to honour master painter Jan Matejko

09.01.2023 09:30
The Royal Castle in the Polish capital Warsaw is set to host a series of events this year to commemorate master painter Jan Matejko. 
Jan Matejkos 1872 painting Batory During the Blockade of Pskov.
Jan Matejko's 1872 painting "Batory During the Blockade of Pskov." PAP/Reprodukcja

It comes after the Polish upper house, the  Senate, declared 2023 the Year of Jan Matejko, state PAP news agency reported.

This year sees the 185th anniversary of the painter’s birth and also marks 130 years since his death, officials said.

Matejko 'depicted Poland's glorious past'

Declaring 2023 the year of Matejko, Polish senators said in a resolution: “Jan Matejko consistently realised his mission of being an artist, while also providing civic service to the nation. His aim was to depict, in his artworks, the causes of Poland’s collapse in the late 18th century and to remind audiences of Poland’s glorious past and its former power.”

The Polish upper house added that through his paintings, Matejko aimed to “persuade the Polish people, living in a partitioned country, of the value of their cultural heritage,” and to “boost their efforts to regain independence.”      

Royal Castle honours Jan Matejko

To celebrate the Year of Jan Matejko, the Royal Castle in Warsaw will be hosting a series of commemorative events, beginning on Wednesday, January 11, with a debate entitled Thinking Through Matejko’s Paintings, officials told reporters. 

During the event, historians from the University of Warsaw, the National Museum and the University of Wrocław will discuss why many Poles "see history through the eyes of Jan Matejko” and will also focus on "the influence of Matejko’s paintings" on how many people in Poland "perceive historical reality and today’s world,” according to organisers.  

Also on January 11, the Royal Castle will screen a movie about Matejko’s oeuvre and his artistic techniques.

Four of the painter’s works, including The Constitution of May 3, 1791, are owned by the Royal Castle Museum, officials noted.   

During 2023, the Royal Castle will also hold visual arts competitions for children and adults, as well as special Matejko-themed lessons for primary school students, the PAP news agency reported. 

Later this month, the Royal Castle will host an exhibition about Poland’s anti-Russian January Uprising of 1863, entitled Love and Duty.

The January Uprising was one main inspirations behind Matejko’s decision to devote himself to depicting the history of Poland, according to officials. 


Source: PAP, zamek-krolewski.pl