The history of the navigator badge dates back to 1918 and the rebirth of the Republic of Poland. As a result of Poland's having recovered its independence, new symbols, official forms and badges had to be designed. This mission was entrusted to artists – industrial designers...
Matejko was the author of several pictorial self-portraits, created at various periods of his artistic career. This self-portrait, the only one in the shape of a tondo, was painted for Helena, the daughter of the painter, and was given to her by the artist for her twentieth birthday, on 6 April 1887. On the bottom right of the picture, the following dedication appears: 6 | 4 | AD | 1887 | (for) HELI (from) father Jan.
Although Kraków does not appear on the map of the cities where Adam Mickiewicz stayed, it is precisely here, at the most central point, that the poet’s monument was erected. Today, its presence seems obvious, but its creation was accompanied by heated discussions and disputes. The idea itself was born 14 years after the poet’s death...
Jan Matejko's palette is one of eight preserved in the collection of National Museum in Kraków. Is exhibited in the artist's studio in The Matejko House. Oval, made of walnut, with two metal utensils. On the surface of the pallet are visible, dried-on paint used by the artist in a wide range of colors.
This is probably a piece of funereal jewellery from the time of the partitions. Corals, along with the cross, have probably been made of black lacquer, with velvet tapes for tying around the neck. The object was used as a prop in the School of Fine Arts in Kraków.
The present portrait of Jan Matejko – the director of the School of Fine Arts in Kraków – is a plaster model for the bust of Jan Matejko made in 1894. This bust adorns the portal of the main entrance to the building of Academy of Fine Arts in Kraków, located at the Matejko Square in Kraków.
A children’s crown, open-work, closed by two yokes, on the junction of which there is a sphere with a trace of a broken-off cross. The ring is decorated with eight fleurons: four with palmetto-ribbon patterns at the base of the yokes, and four leaf-like ones. The crown, on the other hand, is decorated with colourful glass imitations of gemstones of a cabochon cut and various faceted cuts.
The presented pencil drawing by Jan Matejko is a sketch for the painting entitled Długosz and St. Kazimierz which was eventually left unpainted. On his paintings, Matejko often presented historical topics from the reign of the Jagiellonians. One can mention, among others, such paintings as: Stańczyk during a ball at the court of Queen Bona, in the face of the loss of Smolensk (1862), Union of Lublin (1869), The Hanging of the Sigismund bell (1874), or Prussian Homage (1880–1882).
The drawing is a preparatory study for the oil painting by Jan Matejko Stefan Batory at Pskov, which can be found in the collection of the Royal Castle in Warsaw. The painting was completed in 1872, and the artist began sketching it three years earlier. This work loosely refers to the events of the three war campaigns against Moscow conducted over the years 1577–1581 by King Stefan Batory.
The sketch is probably a portrait study of Marian Gorzkowski. It shows a middle-aged man, with a thin face covered with wrinkles depicted as a bust. The man has a beard and moustache. He is probably dressed in a frock coat, which was a formal visiting outfit introduced in the 19th century. This is indicated by the widened lapels of the double-breasted long jacket, which was then popular among men, visible in the portrait. However, the artist focused primarily on rendering the facial features of the portrayed person.
St. Kinga was presented in art in two ways – as a young person in a rich princess’s costume or as an older nun in the Poor Clare habit. Jan Matejko made a deliberate statement of both conventions and portrayed St. Kinga at the age of around 60, in the princess’s robe and with attributes referring to her life at the Poor Clares Monastery (prayer book, crosier, view of the Monastery in Stary Sącz). The model for the character was Countess Katarzyna Adamowa Potocka, known from another portrait painted by Matejko – this time in a contemporary outfit.
Wernyhora – a Ukrainian lyricist and bard, according to some a legendary person, according to others a historical person living in the second half of the 18th century – became famous for political prophecies regarding the fate of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and Ukraine. He was supposed to have foreseen the bloody Cossack rebellions, the partitioning of Poland, the unsuccessful national liberation uprisings and the revival of the Polish statehood.
Everyone knows the monumental painting Battle of Grunwald by Jan Matejko. Spectacular in its size, it shows very dynamic scenery, full of bodies of knights, warriors and horses. Only after a while, the spectator is able to spot the central scene – the Grand Master of the Teutonic Knights, sitting on a white horse...
A breastplate made from a sheet of iron, lined with riveted brass, cut out trimmings along the edges. Decorated in the middle with a Maltese cross made from a brass sheet fastened with rivets.
Leon Wyczółkowski completed a decorative panneau on Knight among Flowers, depicting a Hussar sitting on horseback and blowing the horn against the background of a flowery meadow. This work was exhibited in the Warsaw Society for the Encouragement of Fine Arts [Towarzystwo Zachęty Sztuk Pięknych] in 1907. The sculpted Hussar from the Jan Matejko House is identical to its original painted on a panneau.
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...
The collection of the Historical Museum of the City of Kraków features an interesting 19th-century goblet of unknown history. According to tradition, it was associated with the figure of Jan Matejko. The silver goblet has a lid made in a historic style, with its form and decoration resembling Gothic chalices.