Traditional Art – Polish folk art

The beauty of the traditional arts is that they are by ordinary folk, untrained and unskilled. The techniques used, are taught, from family to family, father to son, mother to daughter. Their charm and naivete belies the history, long tradition and meaning in the work.

The vibrant colours and cheery designs are a way for the peasants to brighten up their daily lives.

This month I showcase Polish Folk Art

Folk arts comprise sculpture, embroidery, painting,and pottery as well. It differs from region to region, and is sometimes very old.  A little known area for decorative flower painting is Polish folk art in the southern or Lesser, Poland.

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Zagroda Felicji Curyłowej

The Zalipie style was popularised mainly by Felicja Curyłowa (1904-1974). She was a versatile folk artist. She was asked to paint e.g. interior of the famous Kraków restaurant “Wierzynek” or the dining room on the cruise ship “Batory”. The artist’s homestead became an attraction even during her life. After her death, it was bought by Cepelia (Center of Folk and Artistic Industry) and handed to the care of the District Museum in Tarnów.

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And Old cowshed in the Felicja Curyło’s cottage, Zalipie, has been turned into an exhibition-workshop hall where paintings by local artists are presented.

Zalipie as a painted village was discovered in 1905 by Wladyslaw Hickel. He was fascinated with the local tradition of painting houses in colourful floral patterns. This custom started at the end of 19th century when old-fashioned furnaces were replaced with more modern enclosed fires and chimneys. Before that, the soot-blackened walls were only brighten with circular patches of lime mixed with wood ash but since the new furnaces with chimneys appeared, ornaments started to be more sophisticated. Women started to decorate not only interiors of their cottages but also outer walls, farm buildings, fences and even dog kennels and tree trunks.

The most talented and famous painter was Felicja Curylowa whose farmstead was turned into the museum in 1978, four years after her death. But Felicja Curylowa was well known not only in Zalipie. She also painted interiors of famous restaurant Wierzynek in Krakow. She was frequent winner of local house-painting competition that have been organized annually in Zalipie since 1965. The name of this contest is Malowana Chata (Painted Cottage) and it takes place on the first weekend after the Corpus Christi Feast. This is also the best time to visit Zalipie. Zalipie village is not an open-air museum, most of the buildings are actual functioning households. Also school, post office and church were painted in colourful flower compositions. Zalipie is a unique place to visit and there aren’t many other tourists (yet).

[Source:http://www.intopoland.com/what-to-see/local-products/zalipie-painted-village.html%5D

Traditional Art is definitely Something to Ponder About

 

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About Forestwoodfolk

Scandinavian culture, literature and traditions are close to my heart, even though I am Australian. I have Scandinavian, Frisian and Prussian/Silesian ancestry and for that reason, I feel a connection with that part of the world. I am an avid Nordic Crime fiction reader, and enjoy photography, writing and a variety of cooking and crafts, and traditional decorative art forms. Politically aware and egalitarian by nature, I have a strong environmental bent.
This entry was posted in Art, Community, decorative art, Europe, History & Traditions, Painting, Traditional Art, Traditions, Travel and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to Traditional Art – Polish folk art

  1. nowathome says:

    It is beautiful! So colourful and vibrant!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. milliethom says:

    This art style is extremely appealing. Not only is it so colourful and vibrant, but incredibly pretty. I realise it’s due to the delicate, floral designs – so fresh and alive. The houses become almost an extension of the landscape. Interesting information about the landscape,

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Millie. I see you ‘get’ this. Not everyone does get this kind of decoration, nor its value in ethnic and historic senses. These old traditions are dying out with the advent of minimalistic decor trends, and technology. Ironic that I am using technology to discover them and disseminate awareness. I appreciate your valued comment.

      Liked by 1 person

    • milliethom says:

      I love old traditions and am always saddened when I hear of them dying out. But then, I know I tend to live in the past anyway. History and traditions always fascinate me.

      Like

  3. This speaks to me, Amanda ! – makes me wish embroidery was my thing !! Lovely: thanks !!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. There’s something so simple and cheerful about folk art. I haven’t been to Poland but it is high on my bucket list. Your photos just confirm its place on the list. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. La Semaine says:

    This is just so beautiful!

    Like

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