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Polish Romantic painters showcased in new exhibition

22.11.2022 16:30
A new exhibition showcasing the work of leading Polish Romantic painters has opened at the presidential palace in Warsaw.
Polands President Andrzej Duda speaks at the opening of the Romanticism: Polish Painting of the 19th Century exhibition in Warsaw on Monday, Nov. 21, 2022.
Poland's President Andrzej Duda speaks at the opening of the "Romanticism: Polish Painting of the 19th Century" exhibition in Warsaw on Monday, Nov. 21, 2022.Photo: PAP/Marcin Obara

The exhibition, entitled Romanticism: Polish Painting of the 19th Century, features some of the best works of Polish artists of the period.

This year has been designated the Year of Romanticism in Poland to commemorate 200 years since the first volume of poetry by the leading Polish bard of the Romantic era, Adam Mickiewicz, was published.

Since the start of the year, institutions and home and abroad have been celebrating the great artists of the Romanticism movement, which was a significant epoch in Polish art and literature.

The exhibition at the presidential palace is part of events to promote the best Polish painters of the time.

Poland was partitioned by Russia, Prussia, and Austria in the 18th century and its size was progressively reduced until it ceased to exist as a state after the final partition.

The loss of sovereignty was in effect until after World War I, when Poland regained independence on November 11, 1918.

The Polish Romanticism movement differed from those in the rest of Europe. It was full of imagery, beauty and emotion, art critics say. Because of the partitions, many artists created their masterpieces away from their homeland, often exiled due to their involvement in national liberation movements opposing the partitioning powers.

The exhibition at the Polish presidential palace comprises 25 paintings from the collection of the National Museum in Warsaw, including works by the likes of Artur Grottger, Piotr Michałowski, Jan Matejko, Józef Simmler and Józef Brandt.

Many of these works depict the greatest moments of the nation's history, such as victorious battles and national uprisings. Among the works is also Jan Matejko's sketch for the 1884 painting Wernyhora. The painting presents the legendary Ukrainian bard, whose prophecies focused on the future of both Poland and Ukraine.

The clairvoyant foretold the partitions of Poland, a failed uprising and the rebirth of the Polish state as well as the reconciliation between the Polish and Ukrainian nations.


Click on the "Play" button above for an audio report by Radio Poland’s Agnieszka Bielawska.