List of all exhibits. Click on one of them to go to the exhibit page. The topics allow exhibits to be selected by their concept categories. On the right, you can choose the settings of the list view.

The list below shows links between exhibits in a non-standard way. The points denote the exhibits and the connecting lines are connections between them, according to the selected categories.

Enter the end dates in the windows in order to set the period you are interested in on the timeline.

Views: 7688
(Votes: 3)
The average rating is 5.0 stars out of 5.
Print metrics
Print description

Woman? Child? Demon? ... Who can you see?
Place of action — Zakopane — “Z village.” Time of action — April 1929. Protagonists — artist Stanisław Ignacy Witkiewicz and his model, this time Nena Stachurska.
Nena was one of the favourite models of Witkacy, right next to Helena Białynicka-Birula, Janina Turowska–Leszczyńska and Eugenia Kuźnicka-Wyszomirska.

more

Woman? Child? Demon? ... Who can you see? 
Place of action — Zakopane — “Z village.” Time of action — April 1929. Protagonists — artist Stanisław Ignacy Witkiewicz and his model, this time Nena Stachurska.
Nena was one of the favourite models of Witkacy, right next to Helena Białynicka-Birula, Janina Turowska–Leszczyńska and Eugenia Kuźnicka-Wyszomirska. He portrayed her dozens of times. Stachurska also participated in his artistic experiments with drugs. The collections at the Tatra Museum in Zakopane feature a dozen or so pastels depicting her in various scenes. Sometimes she is a demonic femme fatale, another time a star looming against the horizon, or a proud representative of her sex.
In the presented portrait here she is looking at us as a huffy teenage girl. Thick hair styled in a fashionable hairdo is falling on her forehead. Her huge almond eyes are looking from beneath the raised eyebrows with both caution and anger. It is the eyes that attract the viewer’s attention. The beautifully shaped mouth remains clenched. She is resentful, angry, but also seductive. The whole image is completed with her clothing, a white–collar blouse buttoned up right to her neck. The outfit brings a school girl to mind. But the protagonist does not look like an obedient, well–behaved miss, but a capricious young woman aware of her charm. A fascinating young woman...
Witkiewicz portrayed persons from his own social milieu, and many friends and representatives of the Polish intelligentsia with great passion. He sometimes called himself a “psychological portrait painter,” as he was mostly interested in the mental condition of his model and not just their looks. The first portrait experiments can be dated back to the times before World War I. At that time he was creating photographs depicting people Witkiewicz knew and was close to. One could see that the artist carefully studied their faces. He looked at them from different angles and with different lighting. He looked into their eyes — whether shining, tear-stained, or sad. Some researchers of his oeuvre believe that he used these experiences while completing portraits ordered from the S. I. Witkiewicz Portrait Company, which announced its activities officially for the first time in April 1925 in Warsaw. Witkacy professed the principle that the “Client must be satisfied,” therefore, he published The Company Regulations that were to prevent any potential misunderstandings. The Regulations stated the technique in which the artist completed his portraits (“Technique is a mixture of charcoal, crayons, pencil and pastel.”) They also listed the types of images made by the Company (from A to E) and the “combinations” of individual types, including the possible child type (B+E). They stated the places where the portrait could be ordered and how long its completion would take (“Depending on the company’s condition and the difficulty of the given face, the portrait could be completed in one, two, three, or five sessions (...) The Company undertakes to complete the portraits outside of the company’s premises only in special circumstances (illness, old age, etc.).”) Any discussions with the artist on “similarity” and “dissimilarity” were out of the question. At the end of the list of Regulations there was a price list for potential clients. The company enjoyed great popularity, was generally accessible and anyone could become its client provided, of course, that they read and accepted The Regulations.
The collection of Witkacy’s portraits at the Tatra Museum in Zakopane comprises, to a large extent, the images of the artist’s close friends, as well as drawings annotated with witty, perverse comments from the author.

Elaborated by Julita Dembowska (The Dr. Tytus Chałubiński Tatra Museum in Zakopane), © all rights reserved

less

Painting “Portrait of Nena Stachurska” by Stanisław Ignacy Witkiewicz

Pictures


Recent comments

Add comment: