Jan Matejko

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    Jan Matejko: Polish Painter

    Jan Matejko, also known as Jan Mateyko was one of the most famous Polish painters, known for his works, including oil-on-canvas paintings such as the Battle of Grunwald, paintings of many other battles, and court scenes, and a gallery of Polish kings. 

      Matejko was born in the Free City of Krakow, a Czech music teacher from Roudnice who first worked for the Wodzicki family in Koscielniki, then moved to Krakow, part of Polish territory annexed to Austria during the partition of Poland. His father, Franciszek Ksawery Matejko (Czech: Frantisek Xaver Matejka), is the place where he married the half-German and half-Polish Joanna Karolina Rossberg. 

      Jan Matejko's career: 

     His father, Franciszek Ksawery Matejko (Czech: Frantisek Xaver Matejka), was a Czech music teacher and teacher, first worked for the Wodzicki family in Koscielniki, then moved to Krakow.

     Jan was the ninth eleven-year-old son of his parents. After their mother died in 1846, Matejko and his siblings were looked after by their aunt Anna Zamojska. Matejko showed an extraordinary artistic talent from the beginning, which enabled him to advance from class to class, although he had great difficulties with other subjects. 

     He never spoke a foreign language and did not get on well with his Polish mother tongue, so the public appearances he was forced to make throughout his life must have been difficult. 

     The art work of Jan Matejko:

     He attended Santa Ana High School, which he dropped out in 1851 because of poor performance. Despite this, for his extraordinary talent, he studied at the Cracow Art School from 1852 to 1858 with Wojciech Korneli Stattler and Wladyslaw. Matejko showed artistic talent from the start but had great difficulties with other academic fields. 

     Legacy of Jan Matejko:

    At a young age, he experienced the Cracow Revolution of 1846 and the Siege of Cracow by the Austrians in 1848, the two events that ended the existence of the Free City of Cracow, which was under the command of General Jozef Bem. His two older brothers took part in these battles, and one of them lost his life. 


    His earliest painting represented Joseph deciphering the Dreams of the Baker and Butler. Still, the first to excite particular attention was The Nightmare, exhibited in 1782, a painting of which he painted numerous versions. 

     He began to exhibit historical paintings in the Krakow Society of Friends of Fine Arts (from 1855). His entire project for his graduation in 1858 was Sigismund I the Elder ennobling the professors of the Jagiellonian University.

     The following year he received a scholarship to study at the Vienna Academy of Fine Arts. Still, after a few days and Matejko, after a major argument with Christian Ruben, he returned to Krakow. He opened a studio in his family's house on the street of Florianska. His works are considered an inspiration for many that began in the 20th century. 

     Matejko was a great artist, a distinct thinker, and an amazing teacher. Being recognized for his Pole patriotism, he was also the protector of Krakow,s monuments. His achievements and contributions are visible if one looks into his time. Not only artists but historians are researching his works too. 

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