Skip to main content Start of main content

Andrzej Wróblewski, Our Contemporary

Andrzej Wróblewski, Pranie (Matka i córka) (Laundry (Mother and Daughter)), 1956, oil on canvas, 150 × 120cm. Courtesy National Museum, Andrzej Wróblewski Foundation and Museum of Modern Art, all in Warsaw
Tom McDonough finds Andrzej Wroblewski’s dialectical canvases in suspension between multiple post-War futures. Unless you are Polish, you might be forgiven for never having heard of painter Andrzej Wróblewski, despite the fact that, in his home country, he is widely regarded as one of the greatest artists of the twentieth century. Notwithstanding, or perhaps on account of, his brutally curtailed career — he died in 1957, just shy of the age of thirty — Wróblewski has attained the status of a national icon. With a mere ten years of active painting, spanning the decade of his twenties, he is a Polish peintre maudit, surrounded by a mythology as legendary as that of those better-known accursed artists of the 1950s, Jackson Pollock and Wols.