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Copperplate engraving “Panoramic view of Kraków from nort west” by Georg Houfnagel

The panorama comes from the sixth volume of the publication by Georg Braun and Franz Hogenberg Civitates Orbis Terrarum (Cologne 1617, tab. 43). It is unsigned. Some inscriptions are visible on ribbons placed against the sky above the respective cities and suburbs: LOBZOVIA, PROMNIK, CLEPARDIA, CRACOVIA METROPOLIS REGNI POLONIAE, STRADOMIA, CASIMIRIA and — without a ribbon — Opidum Iudeorum. In the upper right corner, the legend provides the types and names of ten buildings marked with numbers next to them. In cartouches placed above the relevant parts, there are the coats of arms of: Kleparz, Kraków, Sforza Snake, Polish Eagle, Pogoń, and Kazimierz.

Edward Dwurnik, “Hunting a Dangerous Villain”

The painting was a response to Martial Law in Poland. It shows an imaginary city, which – as is the case with the majority of Dwurnik’s paintings – we view from above. At first glance, everything seems tranquil, stable and safe. Only a searching examination reveals the drama of a city taken over by the army.

Confirmation of the statute of the Grand Guild in Koszyce issued by Stefan Batory

The document is the confirmation of the statute of the Grand Guild of Koszyce by the king, issued a year earlier by the city council, which is also presented on our website.

“Danube channel — Vistula — 2”

Kraków was to become an important hub for water transport. The idea came to light in 1901, when the Vienna State Council adopted the so-called the Koerber Act (from the name of the Austrian Prime Minister Ernst von Koerber, initiator of its adoption). The venture had a huge budget (1 billion kroner); it assumed the construction of new waterways...

“Kraków, Szczepański Square, northern frontage”

Kraków, the Szczepański Square, northern frontage; the market square and kramnice stalls. A fragmentary view of the market square — you can see two gabled wooden kramnice stalls and tables with baskets on them. There are also barrels and wicker brooms lying on the pavement. A few persons are trading.

Ring of the Kraków’s mayors

The date of creation was engraved inside the golden hoop of the ring: 1532. The octagonal sapphire stone of the ring is decorated with Kraków’s coat of arms made in a concave relief. The ring was the symbol of the mayor’s power, and also served as a city seal. The stone needed to be made from a hard, abrasion-resistant material.

Krzysztof Wodiczko, “The Homeless Vehicle”

The object was designed by the artist as a response to the growing problem of homelessness in New York City, was an attempt to guarantee to people living on the street a minimum of private space. The vehicle had both function as residential, as well as streamline the process of collecting bottles and cans. Implementation is carried out through consultation with the future users.

Seal of Koszyce

The seal of Koszyce imprinted in green wax, hanging on a parchment belt attached to a document probably issued for coopers in Koszyce. In the stamp field, there is a figure of Saint Stanislaus — another symbol of the town, along with two little baskets.

Statute of the Great Guild in Koszyce given by the City Council

The City Council, the mayor and his deputy played a significant role in the development and functioning of the city. The City Council had the right to issue statutes of guilds.

Cooper’s guid chest

The chest is made of oak, with inlaid work made of ash. The inlaid work presents two angels, and between them there is a wooden bathtub (on the lid) and two mallets, callipers, and an axe (on the front wall). There are metal handles on the sides of the chest, and, in the middle, there is a compartment for guild privileges.

Copperplate engraving “View of Kraków from the south, from the Krakus Mound”

The inscription in the field of view, at the top, in the middle, in the cartouche: CRACOVIA / MINORIS POLONIAE METROPOLIS.; in the central part, against the river: VISTULAFL. REGNVM DIVIDENS; in the lower left corner a cartouche with a legend in two columns, which explains the type and name of the fourteen buildings marked with letters in the view; on the frame of the cartouche on the left the date, “A(nn)o 1617”; below the legend “Depictum ab Egidio vander Rye / communic Georgius Houfnaglius”.

Photograph “Ludowy Theatre” by Henryk Hermanowicz

The black and white photograph shows the building of the Ludowy Theatre in Kraków-Nowa Huta from the side of the main entrance on Władimira Majakowskiego Street (today: Obrońców Krzyża Street).

Painting “City Hall north view” by Teodor Baltazar Stachowicz

The view shows the edifice of the city hall on the Main Square in Kraków, according to its state before its demolition in 1820. In the foreground, you can see the Renaissance part of the complex with the characteristic attic; on the left, the upper parts of the city hall tower.

Painting “View of Mikołajska's Gate” by Teodor Baltazar Stachowicz

This is a view of a part of Mikołajska Street, closed by Mikołajska's Gate. On the left, you can see the characteristic window grates and the gutter protruding on the street, and, on the right, a fragmentary view of the Church of Our Lady of the Snows in Gródek can be seen. The gate is covered with a tent roof with a break—the hole in the base is topped with a sharp arch.

Woodcut “View of Kraków from the north”

It is the oldest representation of Kraków and the cities of Kazimierz and Kleparz. It was made for the requirements of what was, at that time, the monumental historical and geographical atlas, Liber Cronicarum, by Hartmann Schedl. The view is in an intermediate form between a panorama and a plan, which means that the side elevations have been taken into account in the restoration of the city development, and, at the same time, the area is shown slightly from above. It presents a schematic image of the buildings, to some extent in accordance with the reality of Kraków from the end of the 15th century, that provides the impression of being an accurate reflection of its topography. It is not, however, accurate in its detail, and does not reproduce the actual location and appearance of the buildings.

Wojciech Doroszuk, “Reisefieber”

A project by Wojciech Doroszuk called Reisefieber concerns the problem of economic migration. During his stay in Berlin, the artist played the role of a newcomer from the East and was employed in the service sectors which are usually entrusted to emigrants. Based on his experience, five films and photography have been created, that form a multi-layered story of everyday, ordinary life in a foreign country, including both paid work and leisure activities, for example, participation in mass events organized in the city space. In each situation, the hero is shown as a stereotypical stranger, deprived of the will and the possibility of joining indigenous members of the community.

Nicolas Grospierre, “The House Which Grows”

The project by Nicolas Grospierre, The house which grows, tackles the problem of the gap between aesthetics and the functionality of architecture. In his work, the artist is interested in forms of modernist architecture and in how the very possibility of establishing universal public housing led to the fall of this utopian project.

Karolina Kowalska, “A window onto the winter”

The motifs of urban everyday life as an illusory sign of economic prosperity prevail in Karolina Kowalska’s works. Streets, blocks of flats, and office buildings appear next to intimate apartment interiors and impersonal infrastructure. The architectural and media indicators of capitalism determine the area of human activity, rendering the world of nature a luxurious addition. The artist manipulates their images, pushing them into everyday realities and, with a hint of irony, transforming them. Thus, her photographs, films, installations, and objects reveal in a nuanced, jocular manner, the influence of urban cityscape on individuals and relationships and propose slightly improved variants. The projects realized by the artists combine music, visual art, and text at times.

Karol Radziszewski, “Study for the Wounded Insurgent”

Karol Radziszewski’s work consists of six photographs and a drawing made on their basis. The cycle is considered a preparatory study for the mural, which was to be created in 2009 at the Mur Sztuki Gallery, located in the Museum of the Warsaw Uprising. However, the work did not come to fruition, because it was considered too erotic and detrimental to the feelings of the museum’s public.

Honza Zamojski, “Modernism”

Honza Zamojski’s video, entitled Modernism, is an attempt to critically look at the phenomenon of modernism in architecture. The artist reduces the ideas underlying this trend to a simple pattern of repetitive action seen on the screen. As a result of a looped gesture of arranging round cookies, placing one on another, a kind of a tower is created, which, in a distant association, evokes materialized assumptions of modernist architecture, manifested in simple geometrical forms, abandoning decorativeness and ornamentation, reducing the body of the building to an abstract structure.