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Woodcut “Portrait of actor Kōraiya Kinshō” by Toshūsai Sharaku

Toshūsai Sharaku is one of the most enigmatic Japanese artists. The woodcuts signed with his name come from the period between May 1794 and January 1795. A total of about 150 Sharaku card images depict actors from the Kabuki theatre; these are projects with a completely different new form of expression, often close to a caricature.

Statue of Augustus III Wettin

The statue is modelled on a portrait painted in 1737 by Louis de Silvestre, the court painter of Augustus III. The sculpture was designed by Johann Joachim Kändler in 1740, on the request of Heinrich, Count von Brühl; the sculpting work was completed in the autumn of 1741 and was carried out in cooperation with Johann Friedrich Eberlein and with the assistance of Johann Gottlieb Ehder.

Snuffbox with a miniature painted by Jan Matejko

The brass snuffbox has the form of a round pouncet-box. On the lid of the snuffbox, there is a tondo with a miniature portrait of a girl painted with gouache on a sheet of metal by Jan Matejko. The girl, captured en trois quarts, is wearing a blue dress with cleavage and a lace trim...

Sculpture “Schoolgirl with a Rose Wreath” of the “Wawel Heads” series by Xawery Dunikowski

The sculpture, one of the most interesting female portraits of Dunikowski, was created as part of the plan to restore the lost heads on the ceiling of the Envoys’ Room (also called the Room under the Heads) on the second floor of the eastern wing of Wawel Royal Castle. Originally, there were 194 heads created by Sebastian Tauerbach and his team before 1540. The ceiling was devastated in the early 19th century, when the castle was turned into the barracks of the Austrian army; only 30 heads were saved by Princess Izabella Czartoryska. It was decided in 1924 that the set was to be reconstructed.

Sculpture “Roman Damian Sanguszko's bust”

In the collection there is a bust sculpture depicting an image of Roman Damian Sanguszko (1832–1917). Roman Damian was the eldest son of Władysław and Izabela née Lubomirski, and a landowner in the Zaslav Region, an heir to the family property in Volyn. He managed property in the Slavuta Region and the famous horse stud in Chrystivka.

Sculpture “Portrait Study”

The sculpture was made after 1900 by the artist-sculptor Henryk Hochman, a graduate of the Academy of Fine Arts in Kraków, a disciple of Florian Cynk and Konstanty Laszczka. Hochman continued his education in the workshop of August Rodin in Paris.

Sculpture “Portrait of Zofia Potocka” by Walery Gadomski

Walery Gadomski studied at the School of Drawing and Painting under Wojciech Stattler (drawing and painting) and Henryk Kossowski (sculpture) in the period 1850–1858. He was simultaneously educated in Franz Bauer’s workshop at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna (1856–1858). He fought in the January Uprising. In the years 1876–1889, he taught sculpting at the School of Fine Arts in Kraków. He became famous for his busts of contemporaries, for example, Jan Matejko or Józef Szujski, and historical figures (Veit Stoss, Jan Długosz).

Sculpture “Portrait of Józef Poniatowski” by Jakub Tatarkiewicz

Prince Józef Poniatowski — nephew of the last king of Poland, general commander of the army of the Duchy of Warsaw — died in the Battle of Leipzig in 1813. Death in the waters of the Elster River initiated the cult of his character, strongly associated with the legend of Napoleon. In 1817, the prince's body was placed in the St. Leonard's Crypt under Wawel Cathedral. The bust is an original copy of a study for the famous Warsaw monument of Prince Józef Poniatowski, sculpted by Bertel Thorvaldsen. Jakub Tatarkiewicz, who — like Konstanty Hegel and Paweł Maliński — was Thorvaldsen's student at the Roman Academy of St. Luke, successfully adapted the cold neoclassicism of his teacher here.

Sculpture “Portrait of a Roman woman”

The portrait of a head comes from a bust of a Roman woman who lived in the mid–3rd century. With a realistic expression of facial features, it depicts a middle-aged woman. The big eyes looking straight and thin, slightly tight lips suggest a firm character. The cheeks are fleshy but with visible zygomatic bones; the jaw is massive, with a clearly marked full chin. The hairdo expresses the fashion at the time, referring to a hairstyle introduced by Julia Domna, the wife of Emperor Septimius Severus.

Sculpture “Maria Sobańska's bust” by Konstanty Laszczka

The bust of Maria, née Skrzyńska Sobańska, made in the Art Nouveau style, was carved out of Carrara marble. The object—acquired after the liquidation of a mansion—was transferred to the Regional Museum in Gorlice. Maria Sobańska came from the influential Skrzyński noble family, which had the title of “Count” .

Sculpture “Feliks Jasieński’s bust” by Konstanty Laszczka

Feliks Jasieński (1861—1929), pseudonym Manggha, the outstanding connoisseur of art, patron and collector; he was broadly educated and talented musically. He exerted a considerable influence on the art culture of Kraków at the turn of the 20th century by his activity in the field of arts, his views, publications, and also by making the gathered collections available, including the rich collection of Japanese and Western European drawings and utilitarian objects from the Far East.

Sculpture “Bust of Róża Loewenfeld”

The sculpture presents a classicist bust of a young woman with a slightly bent head turned to the right. Admittedly, a faint resemblance of the artistic vision of the German sculptor to the actual figure raised doubts, but how many times have images been idealised, beautifying the portrayed individuals and making them look younger?

Sculpture “Bust of Kazimierz Count Potulicki” by Tomasz Oskar Sosnowski

The sculpture comes from the palace in Bobrek and represents one of the Potulicki Counts (the trouble is that it is unclear which one). The name “Kazimierz Count Potulicki” was used in the case of Kazimierz Ludwik Łukasz Count Potulicki of Więcborg, of the Grzymała coat of arms (1793–1871) and his son, Kazimierz Wojciech Count Potulicki of Więcborg, of the Grzymała (1820–1880) coat of arms.

Sculpture “Bust of Józef Szujski” by Józef Hakowski

A small, barely 40 centimetre tall statuette depicts one of the greatest Krakow historians and journalists of the 19th century: Professor of Kraków Alma Mater, Józef Szujski. The bronze bust depicts a middle-aged man with a distinctive look: a high forehead, combed hair, and a short beard with moustache.

Sculpture “Adam Mickiewicz's bust” by Pierre Jean David d’Angers

Adam Mickiewicz (1798–1855), was the greatest poet of Polish Romanticism, a national poet, publicist, and political activist. David d'Angers, was a French sculptor, the author of monuments and tombstones, medallions, and portrait busts. In 1829, during his stay in Weimar — where he was working on the bust of Johann Wolfgang Goethe — he met Adam Mickiewicz, with whom he later became friends.

Pola Dwurnik, “Mercy!”

Twenty four colour self-portraits stand out from the crowd sketched in the background; each face plays out the spectacle of a different personality.

Photograph “Portrait of Karol Wojtyła Senior”

Portraits of loved ones (including Emilia Wojtyła) hung on a wall in a flat in Wadowice; then they got to 10 Tyniecka Street, where Karol Wojtyła and his father settled in after Karol’s final school examinations. The portraits were silent witnesses of traumatic events. One day when Karol came home, he found his father’s dead body. After this experience it was very difficult for him to return to the flat.

Photograph “Portrait of Emilia Wojtyła”

A portrait of Emilia Wojtyła who died in 1929 when Karol was 9. The photograph had its place in a living room in a flat in Wadowice and afterwards, together with other objects, it was transported to Tyniecka Street in Kraków, where Karol and his father moved after Karol’s final school examinations. The portrait of his mother accompanied Karol until he entered a seminary.

Paweł Althamer, “Daniel”

One of some one hundred figures made during Althamer’s project Almech at the Deutsche Guggenheim. From his father’s plastics-manufacturing company, the artist transferred some machines to the gallery. The exhibition space was turned into a sculptor’s studio, where factory machines and molten plastic poured over a metal frame replaced chisel and marble.

Painting “Szymanowski's portrait” by Stanisław Ignacy Witkiewicz

Karol Szymanowski met Stanisław Ignacy Witkiewicz in Zakopane in the summer of 1904. The acquaintance quickly turned into many years of friendship. In March and April 1905, they travelled around Italy together and met in Zakopane on many occasions. Szymanowski dedicated his I Piano Sonata in C minor Op. 8 composed in the period 1903—1904 “to Stanisław Ignacy Witkiewicz” (it was published in print in 1910).