Residents of the area of Gorlice have known petroleum since time immemorial. This is proved by the ancient names of many nearby places and rivers still used today: Ropa, Ropica or Ropki (with the stem ropa, meaning “oil, petroleum”). According to the legend, King Władysław I the Elbow-high already knew about the flammable properties of petroleum, because he ordered lanterns to be lit with “rock oil”...
The Lajkonik (a person dressed as a Tatar riding a hobbyhorse), formerly known as the Zwierzyniec Horse, appears on one day of the year on the streets of Kraków together with its whole entourage and the Mlaskot band (which owes its name to the shrill sound of the music it plays), on the octave of the Feast of Corpus Christi.
Photomontage: a white plane of the Main Market Square, the Adam Mickiewicz Monument, the Cloth Hall, outlines of the Wawel Castle and churches — all made of black paper columns with white letters overprinted. What draws our attention is the calendar page dated “March 8, International Women’s Day.”
One of the legends of the town of Olkusz, passed down by generations, tells the story of the silver mines, to which the town owed its prosperity. One day, the devil decided to fill up the excavations that were so valuable for the inhabitants of the region.
With the first wave of Buddhism that swept the entire archipelago, a Hindu bodhisattva arrived in Japan: Avalokiteshvara. In India, he was considered the spiritual son of Buddha Amitabha (in Japanese – Amida), and also the “ocean of compassion” as well as the embodiment of Mahayana virtues.
Glass of milky and pink colours, on a small base of a jug-like shape, decorated with a painted hunting scene of the legend of Saint Hubertus.
The costume of Lajkonik, also called the Zwierzyniec Horse, designed by Stanisław Wyspiański in 1904, could be seen in the streets of Kraków until 1963. The costume used today during the annual frolics of Lajkonik is a faithful copy of the displayed exhibit. Although legend associates the origins of Lajkonik celebrations with the Tatar invasions of Kraków in the 13th century, the first ever source reference to it dates back to 1738.
The evolution of iconography, from the instilling of an idea, its crystallisation in worship, to its materialisation in art is a long and complicated process. The example of the Protection of the Mother of God shows how creativity could develop a theme based on one idea; the idea in which the East and the West found a common source, and through the interpretation of which their paths diverged with time.