„Theme of Work” as the Main Source of Painting Topics in Social Realism in the Second Half of the 19th Century Cover Image
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Motyw pracy jako główne źródło przedstawień malarskich w realizmie społecznym II połowy XIX wieku
„Theme of Work” as the Main Source of Painting Topics in Social Realism in the Second Half of the 19th Century

Author(s): Anna Frankowska
Subject(s): Visual Arts
Published by: Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Łódzkiego
Keywords: Realism;Franciszek Kostrzewski;Henryk Pilatti;Józef Szermentowski;Aleksander Gierymski;motive of work;Polish painting
Summary/Abstract: This article presents motive of work in Polish painting after 1850 when Social Realism was one of the most important styles in art. It presents daily life of poor people particularly at work: craftsmen, merchants, tradeswomen. They are painted as concerned, exhausted and unhappy. Choosing this type of topics by painters was their reaction for political situation in our country. In that period of time, Poland was after the fall of the January Uprising. People rejected romantic model and started to head towards the vision of positivism. Work started to play an important role in the reconstruction of the country. It was believed that thanks to hard work, cooperation of social strata and support for the poorest people it would be possible to regain independence. Motive of work was used very often by famous Polish artists such as Franciszek Kostrzewski, Henryk Pilatti, Aleksander Gierymski and Jozef Szermentowski. By their paintings they appealed to the ruling elite so that it would appreciate the hard work made by lower classes and together try to fight for the freedom of Poland. In this article I present and describe several paintings of Social Realism and focus on the motive of work in the context of the historical background.

  • Page Range: 161-168
  • Page Count: 8
  • Publication Year: 2019
  • Language: Polish