The work is an accurate replica of Yasser Talal al Zahrani’s prison cell at the American detention camp for terrorist suspects at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The Saudi prisoner died in 2006. The official cause of death was given as suicide. However, an examination by an independent pathologist showed traces of repeated beating, which could be indicative of torture. The work can be interpreted as a commentary on the abuse of human rights by imperialist powers, and the individual’s helplessness in the face of such behavior.
The staff of the head was given to the Historical Museum of the City of Kraków by the Kraków authorities in 1951. This is a wooden cane, finished with a carved ending in the shape of a man's head. The head is that of a man with a short beard and a turban on his head, decorated with a flower. The presented mace was the insignia of the head of Łobzów Borough.
The series of photographs is a record of one of numerous actions that the two artists carried out in their own flat. It took place in August 1975, with the participation of Przemysław Kwiek’s sister Zofia Kulik and the artists’ son – Maksymilian Dobromierz. A cardboard tube was the centre of the action. It had been made to order as an advertising prop; after the action it went to the client.
The scene shows the goddess Aphrodite leaning her head towards a winged Cupid to listen to what he wants to say to her. The goddess’s enigmatic smile suggests the frivolous character of the conversation. The artistic virtuosity: flawlessly smooth moulding and details rendered carefully are the typical features of Wiktor Brodzki’s sculptures.
Hunting arquebus with a wheel-lock, after Jan Klemens Branicki (1689–1771), the Grand Hetman of the Crown.
Old-time hunting, being an elite form of entertainment for the highest levels of society, required an adequate frame, created by, e.g., luxurious firearms. This kind of weapon was usually made from precious materials and artfully decorated in a style typical of the epoch.
Michałowski created a model (probably made of plaster) for this figurine between 1832 and 1835 in Paris while being part of the circle of the Nicolas-Toussaint Charlet's studio, at that time — as the painter's daughter will later put it — “a real hotbed of Bonapartism.” Drawing on the iconography of heroic leaders, he represented Napoleon on a galloping horse, his hand outstretched to point the direction of an attack; that is in almost the same way as in his other representations of the emperor of that time: the oil painting, Napoleon on Horseback Giving Orders (the National Museum in Wrocław) and a similar watercolour painting (National Museum in Kraków).
The picture depicts Prince Władysław Sigismund Vasa, later Władysław IV Vasa, the King of Poland. It was painted by an unknown artist of Rubens' circle, and it repeats the pattern established by Rubens in other similarly composed equestrian portraits he painted (i.a. the portrait of Giancarlo Doria, 1602, Florence, the Palazzo Vecchio; the portrait of Duke of Lerma, 1603, Madrid, the Museo del Prado).
The sceptre was a symbol of the mayors of Kraków. The form of a sceptre symbolizes power, and this refers to royal sceptres or those of university rectors. It was made of silver, and some of the elements were gilded. The lower part of the handle has a hexagonal cross section, the upper part is round, separated by convex rings. The bead of the head is topped with a disc and finished with an openwork frieze of lilies.
Guild maces symbolised the power of guild seniors. They looked like the military maces of the officers back then. The mace consisted of a shaft and a head composed of radially arranged insets called feathers. The exhibit presented here belonged to the Kraków guild of bricklayers, masons and carpenters. It was made of brass, the handle was covered with decorative, gilded metal plates; the feathers with openwork floral decorations were silvered.
The presented mace was the symbol of the head of the Zwierzyniec Borough. The borough was founded in 1810, which we know thanks to the date stamped on its head. Around it, there is also the inscription: Państwo Zwierzyniec + Wieś Zwierzyniec [Zwierzyniec Country + Zwierzyniec Village].
The head is a fragment of the ruler's statue, it is covered with nemes [scarf] with a wide head-band over the forehead, decorated with the insignia of the Pharaonic power uraeus [cobra]. It is a face with faded features; the eyes are shown without detail; it has a wide nose with distended nostrils.
The painting shows Henryk Dembiński (1791–1864), a veteran of the Napoleonic Wars, an outstanding commander and strategist in the November Uprising, and one of the leaders of the Hungarian Revolution of 1848–1849, sitting thoughtfully, in a staff tent. Under a veiled curtain, a battle scene is visible in the distance. The painting symbolically refers to the work of the master Rodakowski, Léon Cogniet (1794–1880), who — after the failure of the November Uprising — painted the picture Prague 1831, showing a fresh battlefield and an officer standing in front of it, whose attitude and facial expression were marked by determination and a desire for revenge.
In the collection of the Regional Museum in Olkusz, there is a well-preserved medieval sword. It is called an executioner's sword, because local legend claims that it was used for an execution carried out in the square in Olkusz. Scientific research does not, however, confirm such a hypothesis with regard to the presented exhibit.
Francis II, the Holy Roman Emperor, King of Germany, Hungary, Czech, Dalmatia, Croatia, Slavonia, Galicia, Lodomeria and Jerusalem, Archduke of Austria, Duke of Burgundy and Lorraine, Grand Duke of Tuscany, etc., confers a privilege granting freedom to Tarnów and its inhabitants. It approves the property of Tarnów burghers and the possessions of the town.
Xawery Dunikowski (1875–1964) is one of the greatest Polish sculptors of the 20th century. The present bust of Vladimir Ilyich Lenin comes from the post-war period in the artist’s work. After the WWII, the ideas of social realism carried Dunikowski away. However, ideological activities did not translate into the form of his works: he remained faithful to the expressive, simplified form he developed in the interwar period.
The throne, a decorative armchair (attribute of power and dignity) of ebony, consisting of 6 parts joined with pegs. The seat, backrest elements and footrest were made of cord woven from palm leaves. The decorations topping the backrest were made with the technique of inlaying with ivory. The outer edges of the backrest and footrest are decorated with wooden carvings in the form of spheres.
Despite the fact that in the picture from 17 September 1989, the seven-ton bronze-cast monument of Lenin stands solidly on the ground, less than three months later (10 December1989) it had disappeared from the landscape of Kraków’s Nowa Huta. Aleja Róż [Rose Avenue], with its monumental architecture, had been the decoration for the statue for 16 years (the monument was erected in 1973)...
Kazimierz Stronczyński, who was for some time in possession of the valuable Włocławek reliquary (Kruszwica reliquary) presented on the website, was a distinguished cataloguer of historical items, a creator of numismatics and an inestimable expert and researcher of seals...
The costume for the role of Lady Macbeth was given to the Historical Museum of the City of Kraków as the inheritance after the actress and singer Jadwiga Mrozowska, who had connections with the Kraków stage in the years 1902–1905. From 1905 the artist settled down in Italy, where she performed as an opera singer.
The representative room of the Bishop Erazm Ciołek Palace, known as the Room of Virtues, houses the gallery of old Polish portrait paintings that were common in the old Poland. For the nobility, their own images and depictions of their relatives and ancestors formed a vital factor for building family and social ties and documenting genealogy and affiliations.