Bronisław Abramowicz (1837–1912)
Feast at Wierzynek’s, 1876
Gift of the artist, 1883

material: oil on canvas

dimensions: 157 × 315 cm

description: One of the best known legends about the reign of King Casimir the Great is the story about the feast prepared by Mikołaj Wierzynek. In 1364 several European monarchs convened in Krakow to negotiate a peace treaty. The long list of royal guests included Emperor Charles IV of Luxembourg, King Louis of Hungary, Valdemar of Denmark, Peter of Cyprus, and the Dukes of Masovia, Świdnica, Opole and Pomerania, as well as Otto of Bavaria, and John, the Papal Nuncio. Feasts, dances and tournaments, all organised with “fabulous magnificence” lasted for three weeks. The most famous feast was the one prepared by a rich councillor from Krakow, Mikołaj Wierzynek. In his painting, Abramowicz presented the famous event with all of its splendour, colourful outfits, decorative objects from the medieval world, and the long series of characters described by historians and writers. All this lavishness attests to the glorious history of a nation doomed to political inexistence for almost a century. The painting itself, however, was painfully slated. The painter’s fellow countrymen saw nothing but an awesome feast, and not the event they were looking for to inspire pride at the long gone but real might of their lost homeland.

exposition: The Gallery of 19th Century Polish Art in Sukiennice,
The Cloth Hall, 1, Main Market Square

key: Around the academy >>>

© 2010 National Museum in Krakow
design & concept: