Tuesday, November 28, 2017, 6:00 PM - Sunday, April 28, 2019

  • Tuesday, November 28, 2017, 6:00 PM - Sunday, April 28, 2019

A complete artist: painter, printmaker, poet, dramatist, stage designer, reformer of theatre, uncompromising visionary. His ideas were sometimes controversial – he proposed converting Wawel Hill into Poland’s answer to the Acropolis – and as such not all were implemented; however, the spirit of his art and personality permeates Kraków until today.

The National Museum in Krakow holds close to 900 works by Stanisław Wyspiański (1869-1907). The artist himself donated his monumental pastel designs for stained-glass windows for the Wawel Cathedral. After he died, a committee of eminent representatives of artistic, cultural and academic circles in Kraków was founded to gather his artworks at the National Museum.

The entire collection goes on show at the exhibition at the Main Building of the National Museum in Krakow, entitled simply Wyspiański (from 28 November), held to commemorate the anniversary of his passing. We will see a vast collection of drawings including sketches dating back to Wyspiański’s school days, stage designs, typographic design, portraits and landscapes, as well as designs of decorations for the Franciscan Church in Kraków, Wawel Cathedral and the residence of the Medical Association. There will also be crafts, sculptures, prints and art books. The monographic exhibition provides a comprehensive review of the works by the leading proponent of the Young Poland movement, revealing how he brought together different genres into a comprehensive whole and how his artistic vision “shaped by the power of talent into a distinctive national style” continues to influence Polish identity until the present day. (dd)

See also: Wyspiański Liberates

The Main Building

al. 3 Maja 1

The central phenomena of the Polish art of the 20th century, the history of Polish weaponry and uniforms, a gallery of crafts, and a dozen major temporary exhibitions each year.

The quickly expanding collection of the National Museum, set up in 1879, soon needed space that Kraków did not have at that time. That is why the idea to erect a new building that at the same time would commemorate the many years of efforts to regain Poland’s independence was born early in the 20th century. Immediately after the end of the First World War, already in free Poland, funds for the construction of an appropriate seat began to be raised. The construction of the building by the imposing Aleje Trzech Wieszczów, staked out just two decades earlier, began in 1934. Today, the National Museum in Kraków boasts several branches, with no fewer than three permanent galleries in the Main Building alone. Deposited on the ground floor are the collections of militaria: the exhibition Arms and Uniforms in Poland presents the history of the Polish military from the Middle Ages to the Second World War. The Gallery of Decorative Arts boasts collections of fabrics, goldsmithry, glass, ceramics, furniture, musical instruments, and Judaica that let the visitor trace changes in style from the early Middle Ages to the 20th century. The Gallery of 20th-Century Polish Art presents the chronology and key tendencies in painting, sculpture, printmaking, and photography as created by the Polish artists of the previous century (gallery closed until further notice). The largest temporary exhibitions of the National Museum in Kraków are organised in specially designed halls.

Tickets to permanent galleries: normal PLN 10, concessions PLN 5, family PLN 20, admission free to permanent exhibitions on Sunday

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