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On Cyprian Norwid. Studies and Essays

Vol. 1: Syntheses

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Edited By Agata Brajerska-Mazur and Edyta Chlebowska

The book is the first volume of an extensive four-volume monograph devoted to the work of Cyprian Norwid (1821–1883), one of the most outstanding Polish authors. The impact of Norwid’s oeuvre does not fade, as he addresses fundamental and timeless issues, such as the moral and spiritual condition of man or his place in the world and history and seeks to answer universal questions. The book contains an extensive selection of contributions which represent different approaches to the poet’s work. They cover various areas of research, including interpretation, thematology, genology, and editing.

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Norwid the Painter

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Abstract: The article provides a concise description of Norwid’s creative persona as a visual artist, based on a collection of several hundred works presented at the monographic exhibition organized by the National Museum in Warsaw on the 125th anniversary of the poet’s birthday. The author focuses mainly on the analysis of drawings, the largest part of Norwid’s visual art heritage, tracing the stylistic changes that they went through over the years and indicating their thematic scope. He also draws attention to the poorly understood sculptural and graphic activity of the author of Solo and stresses the dominant role of watercolours in Norwid’s late works. Finally, he tries to situate the artist on the map of 19th century artistic phenomena and currents.

Keywords: Cyprian Norwid, art, drawing, watercolours, sculpture, graphics

Do we know, and have we ever known Norwid – the painter?

We know from many sources and his own statements that from his earliest youth he treated fine art as the main objective in his life. In his epistolary confessions from different places and times, we can find expression of his ambition and worry, his pride, but also the sorrow and bitterness which he felt at his contemporary compatriotsnot recognising and not appreciating this area of his artistry.

He only took part in exhibitions in Poland occasionally (in Kraków in 1855 and 1856, and in Warsaw in 1877 and 1879). Word of similar exhibitions organised in France rarely reached the...

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