WARSAW LYRICS LANDSCAPE

Władysław Chmieliński (1911 Warsaw - 1979 Warsaw),Old Town Square, watercolor / paper, 23.5 x 35 cm

Pre- war Warsaw - poetic and lyrical. Warsaw is a city that has attracted and continues to attract artists both as an independent "theme" and as a creative environment. The capital has been preserved on countless paintings, engravings and drawings, which are an important element of the city's historical, urban and architectural documentation. Among the depictions of Warsaw, we find works of artists who devoted a significant part of their working life, including Władysław Chmielinski, who lives and works here. In the years 1926-31 he studied at the Warsaw Municipal School of Decorative Arts and Painting (formerly the Drawing Class). The leading theme of his paintings were city views, painted in oil paints and watercolours.

Władysław Chmieliński (1911 Warsaw - 1979 Warsaw) ,Old Town in Warsaw, watercolours, pencil/paper, 33,5 x 23,5 cm

Władysław Stachowicz (1911 Warsaw - 1979 Warsaw),"Wilanów", watercolour, pencil/paper, 48,5 x 33,5 cm

 

In the years 1935-38 he created a series of watercolors depicting objects of Polish architecture; among them, interiors of the Royal Castle in Warsaw and the Wilanów Palace. In 1936-39, the artist used the pseudonym 'Władysław Stachowicz'. The creator has well documented the alleys, squares, historic buildings and the beauty of the city. His works were also connected with the rich thematic of the Warsaw street: carriages, passers-by, street vendors. Calm, decorative views fit into the rich tradition of the Warsaw Veduta and iconography of the city. Thanks to the preserved landscapes, we still have knowledge about the pre-war appearance and  landscape of Warsaw.

Władysław Stachowicz (1911 Warsaw - 1979 Warsaw),View of the Old Town , watercolours, gouache/paper, 37 x 32,8 cm

Władysław Chmieliński (1911 Warsaw - 1979 Warsaw),Zygmunt’s Column, watercolour, gouache/paper, 33,5 x 22,8 cm

In the years 1935-38 he created a series of watercolors depicting objects of Polish architecture; among them, interiors of the Royal Castle in Warsaw and the Wilanów Palace. In 1936-39, the artist used the pseudonym 'Władysław Stachowicz'. The creator has well documented the alleys, squares, historic buildings and the beauty of the city. His works were also connected with the rich thematic of the Warsaw street: carriages, passers-by, street vendors. Calm, decorative views fit into the rich tradition of the Warsaw Veduta and iconography of the city. Thanks to the preserved landscapes, we still have knowledge about the pre-war appearance and  landscape of Warsaw.

Another artist taken aback by lyrical Warsaw was Tadeusz Cieślewski (father) (Warsaw 1870 - Warsaw 1956). He lived in Warsaw, actively participating in the artistic life of the city. He made his debut at the exhibition in Warsaw's Zachęta in 1897; in 1898 he received a silver medal in a competition for a series of Warsaw postcards. He began his artistic studies at the Warsaw School of Drawing under the direction of Wojciech Gerson and Jan Kauzik. In 1895-1896 he studied in Paris at Académie Vitti and at E. Aman-Jean and R. Collin. In 1900 he traveled to Italy and briefly studied at the Roman Academy. From 1906 he was a member of the TZSP several times as vice president of the Society. In 1929 he received a silver medal from TZSP, in 1935 he was awarded an honorary diploma. He was a co-founder of the Art and Craft Association (1904), he belonged to the Pro Arte group. He exhibited a lot; primarily in Warsaw - at Zachęta and, inter alia, in Richling, Garliński, Salon of Art salons. He also took part in exhibitions of Polish art abroad - in 1924 in Moscow, in 1936 at the 20th Biennale in Venice and in 1939 in New York.

Tadeusz Cieślewski (father) (1870 Warsaw - 1956 Warsaw),Palace on Water in Warsaw, watercolours, pencil/paper, 34 x 67 cm, measurements in passe-partout: 44,5 x 77 cm , signed lower right: 'T. Cieślewski'

 

 

During the Warsaw Uprising, the artist lost most of his artistic output. He spent a few post-war years in Piotrków and in 1948 he returned to Warsaw. He was above all a painter of architecture, especially fond of depicting views of streets and squares of Warsaw. His favorite technique was watercolor, but he also painted with oil paints and pastels. Twice - in 1928 and 1951 - he was awarded with the city of Warsaw award; as well as the Golden Cross of Merit and the Commander’s Cross Order of the Rebirth of Poland.

Tadeusz Cieślewski (father) (1870 Warsaw - 1956 Warsaw),Market of Old Town in Winter, watercolour/cardboard, 26,5 x 37 cm , signed lower right.: 'T. Cieślewski'

In the works presented above, we can still see Warsaw before the war, but a strong emotional load is conveyed in a painting by Stefan Garwatowski entitled "Return to Warsaw". It was created in 1956 as Garwatowski's graduation work, which dealt mainly with themes of battle, military and history. 

Stefan Garwatowski (born 1931),"Return to Warsaw", circa 1956, oil on canvas, 115 x 200 cm , on reverse signed : 'Garwatowski | „Return to Warsaw”'

The picture tells of the indestructible tradition of annihilated place, that still lasts in the memory of their inhabitants. In the background, a "city of ruins" is depicted. A war damaged Warsaw after bombing, which the inhabitants are returning to. They carry their possessions in bundles, under their armpits, pulling their whole families together through difficult weather and living conditions, trying to return back to their homes due to their deep connection with Warsaw, family residencies, beloved places and the spirit of the city. Not knowing what they will find, or if their homes survived, the population returns to the ruins of Warsaw which is determined by the decision to rebuild the city. The image is therefore symbolic in its historical context.

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