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Jagiellonian tapestry “Paradise Bliss” of the “History of the First Parents” series

The Jagiellonian tapestry Paradise Bliss is the first fabric of the History of the First Parents series, commissioned by Sigismund II Augustus and created in Brussels during the years 1550–1560. It depicts events of the beginning of the Biblical Book of Genesis (Gen 2.8.–3.20).

Tiled stove, so-called amorial with coats of arms

The stove was manufactured in the maiolica factory in Nieborów, which was established in 1881 by Prince Michał Radziwiłł. It comes from the destroyed mansion in Krzyszkowice near Myślenice and it was renovated in 1977.

Jagiellonian tapestry “God Conversing with Noah” from the “Story of Noah” series

The textile depicts one of the episodes of the Book of Genesis and is one of eight tapestries of the Sigismund collection forming a series dedicated to the figure of Noah. The Latin inscription in the upper border perfectly desribes the scene taking place below: “Noah walks with God. God reveals to Noah the future flood and commands him to build an ark for salvation”. God warns Noah – the only righteous inhabitant of the earth – that because of mankind’s sins, he intends to flood the earth. He tells Noah to build an ark in order to save Noah’s family. Noah is also to bring a pair of animals of each species into the ark (Genesis 6:13–21).

Vessel in the shape of the Polish Eagle

At present, the tableware of the Polish royal court is known to us almost exclusively from archive materials. The majority of preserved single items or their designs come from Augsburg – the most important centre of the European goldsmithery in the 17th and 18th centuries. Among these items, the most outstanding is the state set of John Casimir Vasa.

Woman’s fan

The presented fan from the 18th century was handmade. The top part is painted by hand on paper and depicts a genre scene. The lower part was carved in openwork from a whale bone.

Statuette of a Singing Monkey of the “Monkey Orchestra” series

Monkeys were the subject matter of an iconographic genre called Singerie and so were a popular depiction in the 18th century. The genre was based on the art of Jean Berain which was published in 1711. Scenes of dancing, playing and hunting monkeys wearing fashionable clothes decorated the interiors of royal palaces in Marly, Anet or Chantilly. Realistic looking monkeys were often modelled by Kändler.

Painting “Portrait of Kazimierz Janota Bzowski”

A portrait of Kazimierz Janota Bzowski, who died in 1862, the founder of the Droginia line of the Janot Bzowski family. The painting belonged to the Janot Bzowski family of Droginia. It was donated to the Museum by Witold Nekanda Trepka.

Statuette of a Monkey Playing the Horn of the “Monkey Orchestra” series

Monkeys were the subject matter of an iconographic genre called Singerie and so were a popular depiction in the 18th century. The genre was based on the art of Jean Berain which was published in 1711. Scenes of dancing, playing and hunting monkeys wearing fashionable clothes decorated the interiors of royal palaces in Marly, Anet or Chantilly. Realistic looking monkeys were often modelled by Kändler.

Statuette of a Pole

During the mid-18th century it was popular to set the table on the occasion of the most important ceremonies with porcelain statuettes forming rich iconographic stories. Among the display of the typical national figures, undoubtedly seen as quite exotic in the eyes of Western Europe, one could be find considerable numbers of Poles, whose rich traditional noble attire and bent sabres with eastern ornamentation must have been fascinating to the Saxon court.

Statuette of a Polish Woman

During the mid-18th century it was popular to set the table on the occasion of the most important ceremonies with porcelain statuettes forming rich iconographic stories. Along the entire length of the table, next to the silverware and the china, sat an arrangement of many statuettes in the form of garden paths, streets or castle arcades, placed on a mirror sheet or coloured sand.

Tiled stove from manor house in Droginia

The tiled stove was moved to the Museum of the Vistula Ethnographic Park in Wygiełzów and the Lipowiec Castle as an element of the former furnishings of the manor house in Droginia. During the reconstruction it was located in the room constituting the museum exhibition where it performs a decorative function in the master’s room, although it used to be a source of heat in the Droginia manor where the Bzowski family lived for generations.

Painting “Portrait of Kazimierz Janota Bzowski” of Stanisław Janowski

Portrait of Kazimierz Janota Bzowski (the last owner of the Droginia estate), painted by Stanisław Janowski in 1927. The painting belonged to the Janot Bzowski family from Droginia, a village near Krakow. It was donated to the museum by Witold Nekanda Trepka.

Statuette of a Pole

During the mid-18th century it was popular to set the table on the occasion of the most important ceremonies with porcelain statuettes forming rich iconographic stories. Among the display of the typical national figures, undoubtedly seen as quite exotic in the eyes of Western Europe, one could be find considerable numbers of Poles, whose rich traditional noble attire and bent sabres with eastern ornamentation must have been fascinating to the Saxon court.

Painting “Portrait of Bogusław Janota Bzowski” by Mikołaj Strzegocki

This painting depicts the image of Stefan Bogusław Janota Bzowski known by the name of Bogusław. He was the son of Kazimierz and Marjanna née Dąbski, born in 1821 in Gruszów, who died in 1911 in Krakow. He was buried with his wife at the Rakowicki Cemetery in Krakow. He managed estates in the villages of Droginia, Radwan and Buk. After autonomy had been granted to Galicia, he served as the first marshal of the District Council in Myślenice. At his own initiative, the District Savings Bank was established in this city. In 1854, he married Leonia, Countess Stadnicka, with whom he had nine children.

Biedermeier style night chair

In the manor house from Droginia (moved to the Museum in Wygiełzów), in which the apartment interiors of a wealthy noble family were recreated, the more intimate side of life was also included. The bedroom, located in the alcove, equipped with 19th century furniture, also included a night-chair which served as a privy.

Jagiellonian tapestry “The Wrath of God” from the “Story of the Tower of Babel” series

The second tapestry in the series The Story of the Tower of Babel shows the consequences of human pride. The builders of the tower wanted it to reach the sky. Human pride angered God, who decided to destroy the work of sinful humanity. Bearded Nimrod, the initiator of the construction, stands at the foot of the tower with hand upraised, trying to shield himself from the Creator, who appears in the upper right hand corner of the textile. Builders working at ground level have scattered their tools and disperse in panic, while those who are on the scaffolding point the angry Creator out to reach other; furter in the background, work continues as if nothing has happened.

Tapestry with the Monogram of Sigismund Augustus and a Terrestrial Globe

The grotesque tapestry with a monogram of King Sigismund Augustus (SA – Sigismundus Augustus) and a globe is part of a series of decorative textiles in which the royal monogram plays the major role. Before our eyes, an extravaganza unfolds of ancient gods, birds, animals, fruit and flower garlands. On the axis of the composition is placed an oval shield with the monogram of the king, covered with a closed crown. A richly decorated frame is surrounded by a wreath of fruit. Aside from apples, grapes and lemons, there is also a pineapple, brought to Europe by Christopher Columbus.

Jagiellonian tapestry “The Spread of the Nations” from the “Story of the Tower of Babel” series

In front of us, the last act of the history of the Tower of Babel takes place – The Spread of the Nations. On a meadow at the foot of the hill, a group of people can be seen, with two men standing and five women sitting next to them on the grass. All attempts to communicate with one another have been in vain, the evidence of which is a tablet in the hands of the woman in a blue dress.

Tapestry with Satyrs Holding Up a Cartouche with the Monogram of Sigismund Augustus

Two satyrs hold a blue shield with a decorative monogram SA (Sigismundus Augustus) of King Sigismund Augustus. The cartouche is topped with a closed crown. The mythological deities stand in a frame of richly ornamented strips of wood, curved in an arc, against a forest landscape. The deity which can be seen on the left of the shield has a wreath of vine on its head and is girded with a vine with clusters of ripe grapes.

Jagiellonian tapestry “Turkeys”

Verdures – tapestries presenting animals in a lanscape setting – are a large subset within the collection of Sigismund II Augustus. They can be divided into three groups. Turkeys is a part of a set of sixteen textiles in the shape of a horizontal rectangle. Central area is framed only by a narrow border of interweaving ribbons and flowers. They present animals commonly known in Europe, as well as exotic ones, such as turkeys, which were brought to Europe from America at that time. All the creatures are depicted amid the scenery of a Central European forest, in which, apart from the oaks, ivies and reeds typical of this region, there are fig trees and grapevines can.