Saturday, October 27, 2007

Public Art

The public art in Krakow tends toward the traditional (since it wasn't destroyed during WWII), which means statues of famous generals, popular rulers - and they also love their artists (the large memorial in the middle of the town square is a statue of Adam Mickiewicz, Poland's national poet from the 1800s).

The picture at the beginning of this post is from a park in Wroclaw - a sculpture we walked by every day on our way to lunch from our classes. The sculpture below is from a very moving memorial, also in Wroclaw, tothe Polish soldiers who were slaughtered by the Soviets at Katyn. (This incident has also just been made into a movie that is now playing at the theaters here.)

Then there's the Soviet-era sculpture we saw in Krynica....

And the Poles are proud of their scientists, too. Marie Curie was Polish (Marie Sklodowska Curie) and, of course, Nicolaus Copernicus. Below, his statue in Warsaw.

Below is the Krakow statue commemorating the union of Lithuania and Poland when the Lithuanian Prince Jagiello married the Polish Queen Jadwiga. This union and the resulting Jagiellonian dynasty helped make Poland/Lithuania (The Republic of Two Nations) the greatest power in central Europe during the 15th century.

And I think the buildings are still some of the most interesting "public art" ....

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