The Jan Matejko House

National Museum in Krakow

This is where the most famous Polish painter of the 19th century, whose paintings generations of Poles became perfectly familiar with, was born.

The most famous Polish historical painter of the 19th century, the artist behind the monumental canvases describing the turning points in the history of Poland, was born in this mansion on ulica Floriańska. The paintings of Jan Matejko (1838–83) became known to generations of Poles. The museum faithfully reconstructs the decor and furnishing of the rooms from the time when the artist occupied them, embellishing it with numerous mementoes. The living room and bedroom have preserved original furnishings together with personal effects, trinkets, and family photographs. The painting gallery features, among others, sketches that preceded the great canvases, including Nicolas Copernicus and King John III Sobieski at Vienna, which are presented in far larger galleries in Poland. A video devoted to the work of the great master can be seen in his former workshop. The museum also contains testimonies to the collecting passions of Matejko: the artist gathered examples of artistic crafts and militaria from Poland, Europe, and the Middle and Far East, which he used as props for his paintings. Yet his collection contains not only fabrics, costumes, suits of armour, and weapons dating back to various periods in history, but also ancient instruments of torture.

Tickets: normal PLN 15, concessions  PLN 10, family PLN 25, admission free on Tuesday

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