Krzysztof Skórczewski. Inspirations

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The exhibition extended to 5 December.

The exhibition Inspirations organized by the Villa Decius Institute for Culture displays the works of the Krakow-based artist Krzysztof Skórczewski, the most prominent Polish copperplate engraver.

Initially, Krzysztof Skórczewski created linocuts, cycles of paintings, such as pastels and watercolors, and drawings. However, since 1976 he remained most faithful to one technique: chalcography. The exhibition displays only his copper engravings, because it is the stylus and the copperplate that provided him with a wider range of artistic measures than any other graphic technique and the possibility of the fullest expression. Chalcography is also the closest technique to the artistic temperament of Krzysztof Skórczewski and to his metaphorical and fanciful concept of the world.  Places visited by the artist over many years became inspirations for his engravings. In some cases, an idea for a new artwork would emerge a long time after the journey. The title of the exhibition refers precisely to those sources of inspiration: architecture, landscape, journeys, but also nature and poetry. The artist's works represent themes related to particular places, but also undefined visions: imaginary "stone cities", "hanging gardens", vedute - born out of the need to create interesting, surprising forms, penetrating new possibilities of reshaping the space, often in the form of play with an unknown landscape-labyrinth, rather than from the need to immortalize a particular travel memory. He is the most outstanding artist in Poland who practices the so-called pure copperplate. Working for more than 40 years in this technique, he created over 230 pieces gathered in different cycles, such as: "The Tower of Babel", "The Construction of the Ark", "Dolls", and "Gardens".

Chalcography is the oldest engraving technique. The works of Krzysztof Skórczewski reflect the past eras, above all the harmony of the Renaissance. Two of the greatest masters of the initial era of chalcography were Reinaissance artists Andrea Mantegnia (Italy) and Albrecht Dürer (Germany). The "Inspirations" exhibition is held in the antique Villa Decius palace and a park complex with a unique history and interesting architecture. Villa Decius was erected during the Renaissance period by Justus Ludwik Decius, a royal secretary, as a type of building previously unknown in Poland: a suburban villa in a garden. Today, more than 500 years after its construction, the place preserves the features of Renaissance architecture: symmetry, harmony, references to ancient architecture, and an arcade loggia. It still performs the role of a meeting space open for Krakow residents and guests, surrounded by a garden.

Krzysztof Skórczewski has been connected with Villa Decius for many years. Until now, the historic complex has held two exhibitions of his works. A 2008 exhibition "Nature" displayed a section of his artwork, while a 2010 exhibition "Journey" told about the process of creating one piece of art and the possibilities of transforming prints in modern forms of interpretation. The "Inspirations" exhibition is a continuation of this collaboration. The selected copperplate engravings show Krzysztof Skórczewski's workshop and his mastery in using an unlimited number of shades of gray and using diverse types of strokes, lines, dots, and saturation. The selected art pieces include works from different periods of the author's artistic life: both engravings and copper plates. Multimedia presentations, a contemporary interpretation of the traditional printmaking technique, whose origins go back to the 15th century, are integral elements of the exhibition, says Katarzyna Trojanowska, coordinator of the "Inspirations" exhibition at the Villa Decius Institute for Culture.

The exhibition initiates the celebrations of the artist's 75th birthday. His artwork is a great contribution to the development of Polish culture and art and overlaps with the 25th anniversary of renovating the Renaissance palace and park complex of Villa Decius.

The exhibition will be displayed in Villa Decius from 17th October to 21st November 2021, from Monday to Friday: 10:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m., and on Sundays: 11:00 a.m.–6:00 p.m. Free entrance

The official opening will take place on the 24th October 2021 at 5:00 p.m. in Villa Decius in Krakow, at 28 lipca 1943 Street 17a.



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