Dec. 9, 2021

Fairy world of Julitta Karwowska-Wnuczak

Julitta Karwowska-Wnuczak is a painter, author of illustrations for many books and artistic concepts for cartoon films. The artist's characters Filemon and Bonifacy, based on a screenplay by Marek Nejman and Sławomir Grabowski, brought her the greatest fame. Ludwik Kronic created the cats' film images and Julitta Karwowska-Wnuczak illustrated all the books about the adventures of Filemon and Bonifacy, in which they differed from their film representations.

The artist graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw and did her diploma in the painting studio of Prof. Eugeniusz Eibisch. In 1961 Julitta Karwowska-Wnuczak started working with the RUCH Publishing House. She designed postcards and illustrations, the first ones were made in 1962 for a book by Ewa Szelburg-Zarembina titled "Strange Adventures of Ignaś" ("Dziwne przygody Ignasia"). In the same year, she began a long-term cooperation with the Nasza Księgarnia Publishing Institute, thanks to which she made illustrations for works such as "Tales of Ancient India" by Shanty Rameshwar Rao, "Hawthorn Princess" ("Księżniczka Głogu") by Władysław Ludwik Anczyc, "The Adventures of Lucia Little Nose" by Monteiro Lobato, "Fairy Tales - Not Only About Dragon" ("Bajki – nie tylko o smoku") by Ireneusz Iredyński.

The works by Julitta Karwowska-Wnuczak were shown at exhibitions, e.g. in Italy, Czechoslovakia, East Germany, West Germany, Japan, USSR, Denmark. In Copenhagen, where the artist lived and worked at the time, she had a solo exhibition at the Broste Gallery in 1969. The artist presented her works during the Biennials of Illustrations in Bratislava and Bologna.

The illustrations in the "Almanac of Polonia", for which the artist made seven yearbooks, enjoyed substantial success. The works are distinguished by their saturation with color, variety of forms, and likable characters sparking the imagination.

Julitta Karwowska-Wnuczak brings stories to life by making her unique illustrations. Each book charms with its own world to which the reader is warmly invited. The artist's works demonstrate high painting prowess, her awareness of the themes that appear in the history of art, as well as the diversity of forms related to the artistic output of various cultures.

The activity of Julitta Karwowska-Wnuczak took place in the most prolific period for Polish book illustration in the years 1950-80. Award-winning artists presented their works at international exhibitions, which were appreciated for their casualness, diversity, individualism, sense of humor, and innovative approach. The social and political situation in Poland, dominated by the doctrine of socialist realism, had a great influence on the formation of this phenomenon, known as the Polish School of Illustration. Artists undertook activities related to graphics, such as designing posters and illustrations.

In 1959 Polish artists won twelve medals at the 3rd International Exhibition of Editorial Art in Leipzig, including two gold medals for Józef Wilkoń and Olga Siemaszko. At the 12th Triennial of Applied Arts in Milan in 1960, Polish illustrators were awarded ten individual gold medals. Successive international exhibitions, book fairs, and children's illustration biennials won by Polish artists, strengthened the reputation and status of the Polish School of Illustration.

Julitta Karwowska-Wnuczak Illustration.