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(branch of the Tatra Museum)

Łopuszna, ul. Gorczańska 2

tel. 18-26-539-19

Travelling from Nowy Targ in the direction of Czorsztyn, it is worthwhile visiting the village of Łopuszna, beautifully situated at the foot of the Gorce Mountains and, while in the village, see the manor, formerly the seat of the noble patriotic families of the Lisickis, Tetmajers and Lgockis.

The grange at Łopuszna dates back to the 16th century. The manor was built much later, about 1790, by Romuald Lisicki, a former confederate of Bar. The earliest printed description of the manor features in Dziennik podróży do Tatrów [Records of a Journey to the Tatra Mountains] by Seweryn Goszczyński, published in 1851. The Romantic poet had fought in the November Uprising, was engaged in clandestine patriotic activities and, after the defeat of the uprising, went into hiding in Łopuszna. This is how Goszczyński writes about the manor in 1832: ‘A wooden house in the style of all our native gentry residences: spacious, carefully and solidly built, decorated with a porch that looks like all our porches, with benches at its sides, like those seen everywhere else…. In front of the manor is a spacious courtyard with a smaller house, or an annexe; on the left are the kitchen and servants’ rooms, on the right farm buildings shelter the manor.’

This is also how the manor features in a drawing by the Cracow painter and draughtsman Stanisław Cercha who included it in his unpublished 1891 monograph entitled Łopuszna (wieś w powiecie nowotarskim)… [Łopuszna, a village in the County of Nowy Targ…].

During Goszczyński’s stay at Łopuszna, Leon Przerwa-Tetmajer and his wife Ludwika née Lisicka were the owners of Łopuszna. After Leon’s death in 1881 and Ludwika’s death in 1889, their daughter Kamila inherited the property. She married Kazimierz Lgocki. In 1892, the Lgockis had the manor renovated, after which its appearance changed. The wooden walls were plastered and whitewashed. Round wooden pillars were constructed to relieve the walls by taking upon themselves the weight of the high mansard roof.

Then Kazimierz and Kamila Lgocki’s sons, Aleksander followed by Stanisław, inherited the Łopuszna manor. The estate remained in the hands of members of the Lgocki family between the World Wars, in which period modern farming machines were introduced and the largest sheepfold at the foot of the Tatra Mountains was built. Some of the villagers of Łopuszna still remember the last manor owners as good organizers living on a modest scale. After World War II, the estate shared the fate of many others: taken over by the Treasury and conveyed to a state farm, the manor and the farm buildings were incompetently used, not renovated and gradually fell into disrepair. In May 1978, the manorial complex was taken over by the Tatra Museum and systematic restoration began. A kitchen has been arranged in the manor. There is also an exhibition devoted to the village of Łopuszna, the history of the manor, its inhabitants and guests. Beside the manor, there is a small old house called ‘Gacek’. (Gacek was the pseudonym of another Romantic poet of the ‘Ukrainian school’, Bohdan Zaleski, who lived here.) In the garden we can see the surviving cellars of a cottage where Seweryn Goszczyński was put up. The remaining cottage interiors were used for storing useless objects.

Outside the fence enclosing the manorial buildings, along the way to the village of Łopuszna, there is a wooden cottage transferred here from the village. Dismantled by the owners, it was purchased by the Tatra Museum in 1980. Marked No. 105, the cottage belonged to the Klamerus family with many branches (differing in nicknames) in Łopuszna. It was built in 1887 by Jan Klamerus ‘Sowa’ (the Owl), as evidenced by the inscription on the main beam in the ‘big chamber’.

The furniture in the Klamerus cottage was mostly purchased in the village. The cottage consists of several well-furnished interiors, the vestibule, the kitchen, the ‘big chamber’, and interiors intended for housekeeping functions, the attic and the larder, the latter annexed to the house from the back.

From the vestibule used for the storage of articles of daily use, such as kitchen utensils and small household and farming implements, we enter the kitchen. It is modestly furnished with the bench by the stove used for putting kitchen vessels on and the wooden rod spanned between the stove and the opposite wall used for hanging clothes. Tableware and smaller kitchen utensils were kept in a small open cupboard called the shelf. As in many homes, we can see kitchen utensils manufactured in different periods. Those made of wood, clay and cast iron are the earliest ones, followed by mass-produced enamelled metal pots and pans, and earthenware articles.

As indicated by the name, the ‘big chamber’, a representational interior, is much larger than the kitchen. The characteristic construction element here is a huge beam beneath the ceiling, the main beam, in the middle of which are carved stars (rosettes) and inscriptions, usually with the name of the carpenter and the date of the completion of the building. The table was always an important place in the chamber. Here the family had meals on feast-days, and here the more important guests were seated. Besides the furniture including a bed, a cradle, and a box for storing clothes, the ‘big chamber’ contains, running between the walls, a decorative shelf with a balustrade, with religious pictures hanging on the shelf in a row and decorative pottery beneath. As in the ‘black’ chamber, a special rod was used for hanging clothes instead of a wardrobe.


(branch of the Tatra Museum)

Zakopane, ul Zamoyskiego 25

Oksza villa (earlier named Korwinówka) was designed in autumn 1894 for the wealthy government mining official Wincenty Kossakowski and his wife Bronisława who came from the Silesian town of Sosnowiec. It was the third house to be designed by Stanisław Witkiewicz in the Zakopane Style. In the Spring of 1895, a group of skilled Highlander carpenters, led by Wojciech Roj and Jan Obrochta, began the villa’s construction and completed it the following year, while some of the furniture and woodwork was done by Kazimierz Sieczka.

In 1899, the villa was purchased by Count Marcin Kęszycki, an aristocratic friend of the Witkiewicz family, and he renamed the villa Oksza, after his family’s coat of arms. After Kęszycki’s sudden death in January 1900, his widow, Countess Kęszycka, lived there for many years before selling the house some time during or immediately before the First World War.

As Witkiewicz wrote in 1911: „… Oksza, which at first was owned by the Kossakowskis and then by the Kęszyckis, was built based on a pre-prepared architectural plan. A nearly symmetrical layout led to a symmetrical exterior shape. (…) Oksza is the least complicated of Zakopane’s houses. The applied decorative and architectural motifs had been tested in previously built houses, with the addition of covered passageways around the eastern wall and a gallery connected to a two-storey outhouse in the yard.”

In the interwar period, the villa housed a sanatorium and later a school boarding house. During the Second World War, the Nazis moved the house-keeping school for girls there from nearby Kuźnice. After the war, Oksza reverted to a sanatorium for children at risk from tuberculosis until 1965 when it became state property of the Krakow Region. It became a guesthouse. All these changes resulted in modifications and renovations which altered Oksza’s appearance and interior.

At present, Oksza villa is owned by the Tatra Museum. In 2010, this precious example of architecture by Stanislaw Witkiewicz was restored and adapted to house the Gallery of 20th Century Art. The historical building has had its original shape restored and the visitor can see in its interiors many interesting details and ornamentation in the Zakopane Style, for example the ceilings with decorative beams, the richly decorated door frames and the carved window frames.

The Gallery of 20th Century Art at Oksza villa was officially opened in 2011, thanks to the financial support of European Funds and the Małopolska Region.

The permanent exhibition at Oksza shows the output of artists who lived in and outside Zakopane, who were enchanted and inspired by this place and by the Tatra mountains. Paintings, sculptures, handicrafts, photographs by the most outstanding Polish artists from 1880 to 139, Stanisław Ignacy Witkiewicz “Witkacy”, Rafał Malczewski, Leon Wyczółkowski, Zofia Stryjeńska and Jan Szczepkowski, among the others.

We would like to also encourage you to visit two other branches of the Tatra Museum: the beautiful, historic Highlander house situated at Droga do Rojów  6, which along with its interiors constitute the ideological model of the Zakopane Style, now the Museum of the Zakopane Style – Inspirations and Koliba villa, ul. Kościeliska 18, which was the first house built in the Zakopane Style, designed by Stanisław Witkiewicz, and which now hosts the Museum of the Zakopane Style.

Both these places are connected to the exhibition at Oksza villa by many threads, and only by visiting all of them can you fully grasp the main movements and issues of art in Zakopane from about 1880 to 1939.


(branch of the Tatra Museum)
Zakopane, Droga do Rojów 6

tel. 18-20-122-94

The Museum holds the permanent exhibition Zakopane Style – Inspirations. The display shows the roots of the Zakopane Style: the regional architecture, arts and folk crafts, as well as ethnographic collections from the end of the nineteenth century, and in particular the collection of Maria and Bronislaw Dembowski.

The venue of the exhibition, a wooden Highlander house – in the past owned by the Highlander Gąsienica Sobczak family – is one of the most valuable historical regional buildings in Zakopane. Its oldest part was built around 1830, and its present shape is the result of the extension of the house which took place at the end of the 19th century.

The exhibition is organized in the two front chambers of the house. The black chamber, where the life of a Highlander family was concentrated, is furnished with the Museum collections’ oldest artefacts in exactly the same way as it was at the end of the 19th century.

In the white chamber, which served as a living room in a Highlander house, is part of the ethnographic collection of Maria and Bronisław Dembowski, gathered between 1886 and 1893 and bequeathed to the Tatra Museum in 1922. It contains nearly 400 items, among them glass paintings, ceramics, spoon holders, sculptures, regional costumes and richly decorated shepherds’ utensils. Stanisław Witkiewicz, the author of the Zakopane Style in architecture and the applied arts, drew his inspiration for the style from this collection.

The Museum of the Zakopane Style – Inspirations, along with the Museum of the Zakopane Style in the nearby Koliba villa, form an ensemble which allows the visitor to understand how Witkiewicz’s idea of the Zakopane Style was conceived, from the sources of his inspiration to his specific accomplishments in architecture and the applied arts.

The opening of this branch of the Tatra Museum was made possible in 2007 thanks to the financial support of the Małopolska Region, a grant from the Minister of Culture and National Heritage, and the generosity of the Polish community in the United States, which raised money for this purpose in response to an appeal published in the magazine The Tatra Eagle.


(branch of the Tatra Museum)
Zakopane, ul. Kościeliska 18
tel. 18-20-136-02

The Koliba villa, the first building erected to Stanisław Witkiewicz’s design in the Zakopane Style, is situated at Kościeliska Street, Zakopane’s oldest street with time-honoured houses and characteristic Tatra crofts at every step. In these surroundings we can better understand Stanisław Witkiewicz’s concept.

With the appearance of Swiss- or Tyrolese-styled architecture in Zakopane, alongside many other Polish health resorts, in the second half of the 19th century, Witkiewicz realized that in order to protect Podhale from buildings stylistically alien to the region, a style growing from the local building art should be wrought. Witkiewicz started a press campaign to promote the style. In his reports and articles, he appealed for the use of local motifs in the houses erected by the newcomers and visitors.

At this time, Zygmunt Gnatowski the owner of Jakimówka estate in Ukraine and collector enamoured of the culture of the Tatra Mountains felt an overwhelming desire to have a summerhouse built for him in Zakopane. At first, he was thinking of a cottage like those used by the Tatra people. However, Witkiewicz persuaded Gnatowski into having a house in the Zakopane Style erected instead. The Koliba (which name derives from koleba, a kind of shepherd’s shed) was built in 1892–93 by the local carpenters. The interiors were likewise stylishly arranged with furniture and household utensils as well as specially designed tile stoves, cornices, curtains, and even small cast elements such as door handles and outer elements of the locks.

Originally the Koliba villa looked different from what it does today. In 1901, Gnatowski had a huge wing added on the west, which transformed Witkiewicz’s original design by altering the mass of the building. In 1906 Zygmunt Gnatowski died in his native Jakimówka. He left no heirs, and the Koliba was sold. The ethnographic collection that Gnatowski had kept in an interior called the Tatra highlander’s chamber has found itself in the Tatra Museum in accordance with his will.

From then on, the Koliba changed owners several times. Unaware of its value, they were not concerned about its condition. In 1935, the Polish Rail Military Training Division purchased the building, intending to organize a pension here. In the course of repairs and adaptation, most of the original stoves were dismantled and the unique stylish floors changed. The same happened to the original decoration of the façade. New motifs, characteristic of Art Déco, were introduced inside.

Serving as the seat of the German youth organization Hitler-jugend during the Nazi occupation, the Koliba survived the period without damage. After the war, at first a rest house, it was an orphanage till December 1981. In 1984, the Tatra Museum ordered and supervised repairs to stop the degradation of the deserted building; in 1987 conservation-cum-repairs were launched, later the interiors were arranged. Almost a century after the erection of the Koliba, the Museum of the Zakopane Style was opened here in December 1993. The interiors were arranged by Władysław Hasior.

Five rooms in the oldest part were arranged in accordance with their original function as, on the ground floor, the dining room, drawing room and bedroom, and, on the first floor, Gnatowski’s room and his servant’s room.

Zygmunt Gnatowski’s ethnographic collection returned to its place in the ‘Tatra highlander’s chamber’. Other pieces of furniture, household utensils and small craftsmen’s articles, all in the Zakopane Style, come from the turn of the century when the style was in full bloom. They were manufactured to designs prepared by Stanisław Witkiewicz, his pupil and closest co-worker Wojciech Brzega, and Stanisław Barabasz. Barabasz, from 1901 head of the School of Timber Industry in Zakopane, was credited with the introduction of the Zakopane Style into school workshops. To offer material for comparison, the servant’s room has been provided with furniture designed by František Neużil, the first head of the school. Neużil himself introduced the term ‘Zakopane style’ to describe his self-designed furniture decorated with the typical Podhale ornaments. Witkiewicz was highly critical of this aspect of Neużil’s activity, charging him primarily with a failure to understand the essence of the Tatra people’s style and superficiality and artistic incompetence in the use and interpretation of folk art ornaments.

The Museum of the Zakopane Style is the only place in Poland acquainting the visitor with the history of the achievements of the first theoretically wrought and successfully effected concept of a Polish national style based on the architecture and decorative art of the inhabitants of the region of Podhale.

The Koliba villa opens the brief history of the Zakopane Style, which lasted barely twenty years. After the Koliba, Witkiewicz designed several other buildings in Zakopane, of the villa-cum-pension type, in that the most beautiful, called Pod Jedlami [House Under the Firs]. He also designed furniture, various objects of daily use and elements of the furnishing of the Holy Family parish church. He designed the Sacred Heart Chapel at Jaszczurówka. The main building of the Tatra Museum was erected in brick and stone to the artist’s last design drawn in 1913.


(branch of the Tatra Museum)

Zakopane, ul. Jagiellońska 18 b


Originally run by the artist, it is a gallery of his works. Born in Nowy Sącz in 1928, Władysław Hasior was first educated in Zakopane under the supervision of the outstanding teacher and artist Antoni Kenar at the State School of Art Techniques, which he completed in 1952. He studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw with Professor Marian Wnuk, graduating in 1958, and in Ossip Zadkine’s studio in Paris in 1959. Even before his graduation from the Academy, he started teaching at the State School of Art Techniques in Zakopane, with which he was to remain connected for many years.

From 1959, he took part in all the regional shows of works by Zakopane artists and in the initiatives of artists associated with the Antoni Kenar State School of Art Techniques. In the 1960s and 1970s, Władysław Hasior presented his works at numerous exhibitions at home and abroad. He travelled a great deal, visiting Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Belgium, the Netherlands, France, Italy, Austria, the Federal Republic of Germany, Uruguay, and Argentina. In Zakopane, he was for many years engaged in the organization of artistic events including the February Print Salons, the March Painting Salons, and Surveys of Art Films. His credits also include original monuments and open-air sculptures. Fire, water and sounds feature prominently in these works. In 1972 he constructed a sculpture entitled The Scandinavian Chariot in Sweden. He also collaborated with theatre as a stage designer.

Władysław Hasior’s works are in Polish museum collections in Cracow, Warsaw, Łódź, Poznań, Szczecin, Wrocław, Bydgoszcz, Lublin, Nowy Sącz and Zakopane; and abroad in museums of Helsinki, Paris, Stockholm, Oslo, São Paulo, Milan, Edinburgh, Bochum, Duisburg and Amsterdam, as well as a large number of private collections.

In December 1984 his works were transferred from the artist’s small studio to the Gallery in Jagiellońska Street. The Gallery is based in the former resting terrace of the Warszawianka sanatorium. Erected in 1935 to Tadeusz Litawiński’s design, the wooden resting terrace originally had two levels glazed from the south. It has been adapted for the gallery needs, becoming a complex of interiors on several layers, intended as exhibition rooms, often a concert hall, as well the artist’s home and studio. The Gallery was inaugurated in February 1985.

Displayed in the Gallery are Władysław Hasior’s famous banners, spatial compositions and sculptures made of various materials as well as objects of daily use, often bordering on junk, which have in the artist’s hands acquired a new meaning. Bearing metaphorical, witty, slightly pervert titles, they make one ponder on the present-day world and art.

Art historian Marek Rostworowski wrote about the artist: ‘Hasior is related to late-mediaeval artist-poets who evoked a beautiful awe-inspiring world combining reality with metaphor and the otherworldly, one intended to charm the reality-harassed individual longing to step beyond it… [That was at] the time of Hieronymus Bosch, Bruegel, witches and Spaniards enamoured of martyrdom… In him [Hasior], nothing is what it is, but what it looks to the unbridled imagination. Another reason why it is a fairy tale is that in Hasior’s sentences the words mean something different from what each of them means separately.’

Mariusz Hermansdorfer wrote in a catalogue of his exhibition: ‘Władysław Hasior’s works have a universal quality. They are also very Polish. Connected with the region of Podhale, its culture, faith, history and nature, the local people’s efforts and rhythm of life, the tradition and the present of the area, they have a universal meaning. It is not an additional element, one that occurs besides the local values. Quite the contrary, whatever Hasior does, has universal traits.’ It seems that Mariusz Hermansdorfer’s words are the synthesis of Władysław Hasior’s oeuvre. Władysław Hasior died in Zakopane on 14 July 1999. In the artist’s lifetime the gallery was a venue for meetings with art, which he conducted. Enjoying a standing invitation to the section allotted to temporary exhibitions, contemporary artists, painters, sculptors and photographers regularly presented their works there.


(branch of the Tatra Museum)

Czarna Góra, Zagóra 86


A historic region in the eastern part of the Tatra Mountains and the Tatra foothills, Spisz was for centuries politically connected with Hungary. Between the 15th and the mid-18th century, Poland was in possession of what was called the Spisz starostwo [state domain]. It embraced thirteen towns in Spisz, plus the region of Lubowla-Podoliniec with the adjacent villages, all of which Sigismund of Luxembourg King of Hungary conveyed in 1412 to the Polish King Władysław Jagiełło as a pledge on the latter’s loan of 111 000 score of Prague Groschen.

`Situated in the north west of Zamagurze Spiskie [Slovak: Zamagurie or Spišska Magura], Polish Spisz was incorporated into the Polish State in 1920, following a resolution of the Council of Ambassadors of the allied states in Paris. Polish settlement in this border area was an important factor in favour of the decision. Granted Poland after World War I, the north-western part of Spisz embraces the villages of Czarna Góra, Dursztyn, Falsztyn, Frydman, Jurgów, Kacwin, Krempachy, Łapsze Niżne, Łapsze Wyżnie, Łapszanka, Niedzica, Nowa Biała, Rzepiska and Trybsz. The rest of Spisz is Slovak.

Czarna Góra, one of fourteen villages in Polish Spisz, dates back to the late 16th/early 17th century.

In the northern part of Czarna Góra, in an estate called ‘Zagóra’, there is a wooden croft owned in the past by the affluent local Korkosz family. The layout of the buildings reflects the development of the Spisz croft from a simple bipartite one (consisting of a cottage and a stable) at the end of the 19th century, to a multipartite one in the 1930s. Alojzy Chyżny erected the first buildings late in the 19th century, then staying in America for several years. On his return to the village in 1919, he expanded the cottage, adding a sumptuous ‘big chamber’ with a komora (larder). Husband of Alojzy Chyżny’s daughter Elżbieta, Sebastian Korkosz was the next to expand the croft. Further farm buildings added in the 1930s were a stone stable, a cart-shed and a pigsty. The first treadmill in the village was installed in the old stable. The 1940s witnessed the last stage of expansion with the ‘summer’ or guest chamber with a separate entrance through the porch added.

In the late 1940s the Korkosz family went to live permanently in Slovakia, which is still their place of residence. In 1980 Sebastian Korkosz’s descendants donated the croft to the Treasury [of Poland] requesting that a museum be set up here. After conservation and repairs, the Tatra Museum organized in the interiors an ethnographic exhibition illustrating the appearance of a rich Spisz croft between the World Wars. In the wooden Korkosz croft, the world of peasant culture, now almost extinct, is still alive though the village undergoes systematic changes.

Interiors of the habitable section of the croft: the vestibule, the kitchen, the ‘big chamber’ and the ‘summer chamber’ (guestroom) are laid-out in sequence. The vestibule, where household utensils were usually kept, also contained a carpenter’s bench where all sorts of articles needed in the house were manufactured, ranging from pieces of furniture to kitchen utensils. Other objects, such as wooden milk pails and a hand-mill are also on display here. From the vestibule an entrance leads up to the attic where grain was stored in special containers, and food products kept in chests and crocks. In the past, before the chambers were built, the life of the family concentrated in the kitchen. Here they slept and had their meals, as well as cooking, baking bread and spanning flax and wool.

The ‘gala room’, intended for guests, is furnished as it used to be when the Korkosz family lived here. A loom, which is still in use, is a permanent addition. Also in the chamber are sculptures and photographs of the members of this, artistically talented family boasting sculptors, a female painter on glass, and a female weaver. Ludwik Korkosz’s sculpture of Christ Falling before the Cross is on the shelf, and, likewise by Ludwik Korkosz, the head of Sebastian Korkosz sculptured in plaster, on the stove.

Worthy of attention in the stone stable is an exhibition illustrating flax processing, with tools used for the breaking, hackling and spinning of flax. In keeping with its original function, the cart-house contains a cart. The two wicker baskets inside are like those put here in the past, and the milk-cans are like those used for transporting the milk from mountain pastures. Also on show here is a wooden device used for lifting the cottage when the ground beam or the base were being changed, or when the cellar was being dug.


(branch of the Tatra Museum)
Jurgów 215

Jurgów is the south-westernmost village in Polish Spisz. Among its densely arrayed houses, one can find a small number of relics of Spisz wooden architecture in addition to brick houses with decorated façades typical of the region.

The earliest documents where the village features under its Hungarian name, Gyurgowa, come from the 18th century. The location of the village, its severe climate, not propitious to the cultivation of land and the vicinity of the Jaworzyńskie range of the Tatra Mountains determined the living conditions of the population. The main source of sustenance here was shepherding. The villagers herded flocks in the mountain pastures and clearings of a huge estate in the Jaworzyńskie Tatra Mountains. In 1848, on the strength of the affranchisement decree, they were made owners of the pastures used. In the second half of the 19th century, however, their mountain pastures and mountain-foot clearings became part of Prince Christian Hohenlohe’s estate, which was being integrated, in exchange for which the owners received pastures in the vicinity of their villages. The Podokólne clearing went to the villagers of Jurgów. Today we may see here shepherds’ sheds that the shepherds transported to the spot over a century ago from the clearings in the Jaworzyńskie Tatra Mountains.

The Sołtys croft was built in 1861 by the great-grandfather of the last owner, Jakub Sołtys. Then members of the successive generations of the family inherited the croft. After World War II, part of the family moved to a newly built house while the Tatra Museum purchased the old croft in 1982 with a view to putting on an ethnographic exhibition here. In contrast to the rich Korkosz Croft in Czarna Góra, the cottage and the farm buildings making up the Sołtys Croft are an example of a poor turn-of-the-century Spisz farm.

The wooden croft is composed of a home with farm buildings laid-out in sequence under the same roof. In the dwelling section, we have a vestibule, chamber and komora (larder). Built of logs, the vestibule, which contains a chest for storing the grain, stave vessels used in shepherding for carrying water and for carrying and storing milk plus utensils necessary around the croft, leads to the chamber. There is only one chamber in the Sołtys Croft. Here the family slept, prepared their meals and entertained guests. The chamber walls are made of logs cut into halves, planed inside and roughly hewn outside. Beneath the ceiling runs the main beam with a carved date of the completion of the building and a rosette motif. The modest furniture includes a stove which once had an open range with iron tripods used for cooking, a bed, a shelf where pots and pans were kept, benches and a table with, hanging above it, pictures on glass later replaced with chromolithographs. Other embellishments of the chamber are small wall hangings, and so is ornamented pottery put up above the table. Rods suspended above the bed and near the stove act as wardrobe.

The farm buildings comprise a woodshed, a sheepfold, a threshing-floor and a stable. All are built of spruce logs, with the roof covered with lathing. The woodshed was used for storing wood and keeping a sledge, and often also weaving implements not used in the summer. The sheepfold could house almost thirty sheep. The tool used for threshing was the flail; certain stages of flax processing also took place on the threshing-floor.

In the chamber, Jurgów costume of the late 19th/early 20th century, now unique, is on display. The clothes assembled inside the poor croft illustrate how the villagers, both the richer and the poorer, dressed.

There are several varieties of Spisz costumes; each in itself quite varied. The villagers of Jurgów, Czarna Góra and Rzepiska wore what ethnographers describe as the Jurgów variety. The traditional outfit largely depended on natural, home-manufactured materials, wool, linen and leather. With two fulling-mills in the past, Jurgów was well known as a weaving centre where woollen fabric was made of worsted yarn, and canvas and thin tulle-like fabrics of very thin linen yarn. Some elements of the costume, especially those intended for women, were factory-made. Of these, the red woollen cloth, of which the rich highlanders’ wives made their skirts and bodices, was very popular. Mass-produced cotton fabric and silk were also bought, as well as brocade for caps and bodices. With its well-developed textile industry, Kieżmark was the place for buying decorative accessories and haberdashery.

The typical male outfit, initially rather modest, consisted of a home-spun linen shirt, white woollen cloth pants, a russet cloth overcoat, a sheepskin coat, a sleeveless jacket and a wide leather belt. As time went on, the outfit grew richer in embroidery and other decorations. The best men wore interesting embellishments on their hats made by bridesmaids of pieces of straw, red woollen cloth and goose feathers.

The Jurgów costume collection illustrates how the local costume changed with the changing circumstances. Today, on the occasion of church holidays and family celebrations, the villagers more and more often put on Spisz costumes made according to traditional patterns.


(branch of the Tatra Museum)

Chochołów 75

The village of Chochołów in the region of Podhale has a rich history beginning early in the 16th century. The first known document containing reference to the village is the 1592 privilege issued by King Sigismund III of the Vasa dynasty, granting Bartłomiej Chochołowski hereditarily the post of village administrator for his participation in the expedition against Muscovy. Chochołów is evidently an old village, with a long record of engagement in important historic events. Besides Bartłomiej, quite a few Chochołów village administrators distinguished themselves by their courage in the royal army. During the 1655–56 Swedish invasion known as the Deluge, the Chochołów villagers fought valiantly in the war under the command of Krzysztof Żegocki the starosta [a kind of royal sheriff] of Babimost. Successive Polish kings confirmed the Chochołów village administrators’ rights and privileges. The people of Chochołów also had their share in the 1768–72 Confederation of Bar.

The village owes its fame in the region of Podhale to the Chochołów Uprising of 1846, which was a short-lived armed action against Austria during the Cracow revolution preceding the 1848 revolution called the Springtime of the Nations. The 1846 events had taken a long time to mature; not without meaning was the 1832 visit to the region of Podhale of the poet Seweryn Goszczyński, who had lived in hiding since after the November Uprising of 1830/31. He was founder of the clandestine Association of the Polish Nation set up in Cracow, which operated in all three zones of divided Poland with a view to rising against the partitioning powers. Also important was the Association activists’ campaigning. The plan to engage Chochołów in an uprising against Austria was born as a result of the local conspirators’ contacts with the emissaries arriving in the region of Podhale. These had got in touch with the local patriotic activists, teacher and organist Jan Kanty Andrusikiewicz, RC priest Leopold Kmietowicz of Chochołów, and another RC priest, Michał Głowacki, ‘Światopełk’, of Poronin, all of whom were later leaders of the Chochołów Uprising.

The date of the outbreak of the uprising against Austria was fixed by the National Government in Cracow: it was to start on 21 February. The Austrian authorities had learnt about the plan and the Austrian troops entered Cracow on 18 February. Members of the National Government were hesitant as to whether call off the uprising but the news had not reached Chochołów, which was a long way away. On the evening of 21 February, armed insurgents under Andrusikiewicz and Father Kmietowicz’s command attacked the post of the Austrian Frontier Guards in Chochołów. After disarming the guards, Andrusikiewicz declared the outbreak of an uprising. The insurgents proceeded to Sucha Góra across the Galician-Hungarian border, planning to come by resources for the needs of the movement in the local customs house that they easily seized. One of the guards even joined the insurgents. The next day was spent on recruiting volunteers and getting the weapons ready. On the evening of 22 February, about five hundred peasants recruited in the neighbouring villages of Witów, Dzianisz and Ciche gathered in Chochołów. About midnight, they faced an unexpected assault launched by the customs guards under the command of Romuald Fiutowski the officer of the finance guards of Nowy Targ, aided by villagers of Czarny Dunajec misled into joining them by the Austrians. The insurgent leaders Father Kmietowicz and Andrusikiewicz were wounded in the skirmish. Further resistance was pointless because of the approach of reinforcements to suppress the uprising. The Chochołów Uprising leaders and participants suffered severe punishment. Many of them were imprisoned in Spielberg, Kufstein and Wiśnicz. Father Kmietowicz was sentenced to death, which sentence was later changed to many years in prison. Andrusikiewicz and others were captured and sentenced to close confinement. All were freed during the 1848 revolution.

The exhibition in the Museum of the Chochołów Uprising highlights the 1846 event, an episode of importance to the history of Chochołów. Opened in 1978, the museum is located in a time-honoured cottage owned in the past by the rich farmer Jan Bafia. Typical of the architecture of the region of Podhale, built of logs cut lengthways into halves that cross at the corner, the Bafia cottage consists of a vestibule, the ‘black’ chamber, the ‘white’ chamber, the bedchamber and a small attic storeroom above the bedchamber.

The museum interiors are furnished in such a way as to combine the history of the uprising with an ethnographic exhibition illustrating the living conditions of a Tatra highlander family in the mid-19th century. In the ‘black’ chamber, where the family’s daily life proceeded, utensils necessary for their household tasks are on display. The ‘white’ or ‘gala’ chamber has a different character. Used on festive occasions, it has light walls and decorated furniture, paintings on glass and pottery, in a word, articles testifying to the owners’ affluence.

Boards making up the historical part of the exhibition are displayed in all cottage interiors. Thus we have a cartouche with the chronology of the uprising and weapons used by the insurgents. Texts, documents, facsimiles and prints illustrate the ancient tradition of the royal village of Chochołów. Also highlighted at the exhibition is Seweryn Goszczyński the poet and conspirator connected with the Tetmajer family of Łopuszna. To introduce the visitor into the background of the Chochołów Uprising, the course of the 1846 Cracow revolution is outlined, followed by preparations for the uprising proper, with profiles of its leaders, documents, the participants’ list and the epilogue, i.e. the suppression of the uprising by the Austrians. Though merely an episode, the event is still present in the minds of the villagers. This is proved by the display in the museum of documentation testifying to the celebration of the uprising anniversaries, especially significant in 1913, on the eve of the ultimate stage of the struggle for independence. The exhibition closes with a display of written works, scholarly papers alongside poetry and prose in which the Chochołów Uprising has found reflection.

The Kornel Makuszyński Museum

(branch of the Tatra Museum)

Zakopane, ul. Tetmajera 15

tel. 18-20-122-63


The Kornel Makuszyński Museum is Zakopane’s second biographic-literary museum after the Jan Kasprowicz Museum in the Harenda. It is based in the Opolanka house where the Makuszyńskis had stayed during their almost annual summer and winter visits to Zakopane between the two World Wars, and where they settled after World War II. Many precious objects in the couple’s possession and their large library perished in Warsaw during World War II. The Makuszyński Museum houses merely a fraction of what the writer, an art collector on friendly terms with many outstanding artists, had assembled. The Museum was set up in 1966 following a donation made by Janina Gluzińska-Makuszyńska (1896–1972) the writer’s widow.

Kornel Makuszyński (1884–1953), born in Stryj [now Stryy, Ukraine], writer, journalist and drama critic, one of the most popular authors of children’s books, spent his youth in Lwów [now L’viv, Ukraine] where he went to grammar school and studied at the Philosophical Department of the Jan Kazimierz University. Before World War I, he worked as dramaturg at the Municipal Theatre in Lwów. During the war, Makuszyński and his first wife Emilia née Bażeńska were deported to Russia. Released on his friends’ pledge, he returned home, worked for several months at the Municipal Theatre in Lwów, subsequently leaving the city for good. Till 1918, he lived in Kiev, was dramaturg at Stanisława Wysocka’s Polish Theatre and acted as President of the local Society of Writers and Journalists. While in Kiev, he wrote his first novels.

A new period started in the writer’s life, after Poland regained independence and Makuszyński settled in Warsaw. In the 1930s he wrote his most popular books for children and young people. These were Przygody Koziołka Matołka [Silly Billy Goat’s Adventures]; O dwóch takich co ukradli księżyc [The Moon-stealing Two]; Przyjaciel Wesołego Diabła [Joyful Devil’s Friend]; Skrzydlaty chłopiec [Winged Boy]; Wielka brama [Great Gate]; Wyprawa pod psem [Dog-omened Expedition]; Szatan z siódmej klasy [Seventh-grade Satan]; List z tamtego świata [Otherworldly Letter]. Active as a novelist, he was also a prolific journalist. His comments and reviews appeared in almost all of the popular periodicals, making him one of the best-known figures in Warsaw’s artistic and social life. From 1934, Zakopane acted as second home to Makuszyński and his second wife Janina née Gluzińska.

As in Warsaw, Kornel Makuszyński participated actively in Zakopane’s intense artistic and social life and sports events. The Karpowicz café in Zakopane was in those times a meeting place for celebrities, commemorated on these famous occasions by Kazimierz Sichulski in his excellent caricatures. The meetings provided material for many press articles and books on Zakopane issues. Though he was not a sportsman and mountain climber himself, Makuszyński sat on the organizing committees of, and acted as patron towards, numerous skiing and horse-riding races and automobile rallies. He also acted as patron towards the Wisła Club and it was on his initiative that the children of the poorest families were given skis so that they could practise skiing. In honour of his merits as a friend of children, the Kornel Makuszyński memorial skiing contests are organized for children today. Zakopane made its first appearance in Makuszyński’s work as early as the 1920s; his lighter comments appeared in the Warsaw and Zakopane press. Though Kornel Makuszyński liked Zakopane from the very beginning, he did not spare the town pungent and caustic criticism. As time went on, his attitude grew more lenient, and Zakopane reciprocated his feelings, granting him in 1931 the title of an Honorary Citizen.

The outbreak of World War II put an end to the writer’s material and artistic stability. As mentioned above, the Makuszyńskis’ flat in Warsaw, full of works of art, was seriously damaged during an air raid in 1939 and during the Warsaw Uprising in 1944. After their stay in the Pruszków camp [following the fall of the uprising], the Makuszyńskis arrived in Zakopane and settled on the first floor of the Opolanka. Makuszyński did not feel well in the new socio-political realities (only two of his new books were published in the 1940s), but he took an active part in Zakopane’s cultural life, devoting much of his time and heart to meetings with children. He died on 31 July 1953 and was buried in the Old Cemetery in Zakopane. There are always flowers and school badges on his grave, a token of memory by generations and generations of faithful young readers.

The museum in the Opolanka house occupies four rooms of the Makuszyńskis’ former flat. The collection includes successive editions of Makuszyński’s works, in addition to historical-literary studies on his oeuvre and diaries. Besides the writer’s own manuscripts, his archives also embrace an ample set of letters from outstanding writers, pain­ters, musicians, theatre people, scholars and politicians, as well as numerous letters from his readers. To complement the archives, there are also press cuttings and photographs.

The art collection embraces works by famous Polish artists (paintings by Julian Fałat, Władysław Jarocki, Fryderyk Pautsch, Kazimierz Sichulski, Władysław Skoczylas, Stanisław Wyspiański et al., and sculptures by Konstanty Laszczka, Henryk Kuna et al.). There are also designs for illustrations to Makuszyński’s books, antique furniture mostly in the Biedermeier style, miniatures, antique art weavings (eastern rug, Persian prayer carpet and Japanese screen), and numerous utility antiques: lamps, clocks, Polish and French glass articles, and Chinese, English, Saxon and Meissen porcelain.

Historian of literature Jacek Kolbuszewski aptly describes the mood of the museum interiors: ‘… there was something essentially joyful in Makuszyński’s attitude towards the world and people, those in his closest surroundings and others. Kornel Makuszyński looks very serious in Schabenbeck’s photograph in the corridor of his museum. Yet there are cheerful sparkles in his eyes, and there is a smile in the corner of his mouth. The smile has not been catalogued, but it is part of the Kornel Makuszyński Archives and the Museum’s, too. Come and see if you do not believe…’


(branch of the Tatra Museum)
Zakopane, Droga na Koziniec 8

Tel. +48/18-20-152-05, +48/18-20-129-35

open: Monday to Friday 8:00 – 16:00

Main Building

(branch of the Tatra Museum)

Zakopane, ul. Tetmajera 15

tel. 18-20-122-63


Zakopane, ul. Krupówki 10