JERZY PANEK (b. 1918- d. 2001) He graduated from the Institute of Fine Arts in Cracow and the Academy of Fine Arts. He studied under Prof. Eugeniusz Eibisch. In 1995 he graduated from the Academy and became one of the jurors of the famous "Arsenal". His journey to China in 1956 had a great influence on him and his artistic output. The artist stated afterwards that :"it was a shock, like war but yet somehow different". In China he became interested in techniques of using wood and rediscovered paper, noticing the importance of its facture and texture. Moreover, he learned to perceive the black and white colours, which will strongly dominate his art, in a different way. After his return to Cracow he cooperated with Kantor on his theatrical projects, but this episode failed after a series of failures, interpreted as duel of two strong personalities. In 1960 he became a member of the Xylon International Woodcut Association. A few years later he began his contribution to the Cracow's "Literary Life" magazine, where his works were reproduced. In the late sixties he devoted himself to his famous, inspired by Dante, "Hell" series. He won a prize from the Department of Culture and Arts and a Golden Medal at the New Delhi Art Triennale for his "White hat self-portrait". In 1979 he took part in the "Poles' self portrait" exposition at the National Museum in Cracow. He won the prize of Jan Cybis and the prize of Art Association for the whole of his output. He was an honorable professor of the Academy of Fine Arts in Cracow. His output in the field of graphics ranged from woodcuts inspired by naive and folk art, etchings and splinters. His artistic vision was described by the Tygodnik Powszechny: "here we get the same amount of witty humor and consciousness of Apocalypse . This knowledge, combined with an intuition, helps to create this art and its clarity".
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