Polish Painter, 1838-1893
He studied from 1852 to 1858 at the School of Fine Arts in Krakew and, during this time, started exhibiting historical paintings with the Society of Friends of the Fine Arts there (e.g. Sigismund I Bestowing Nobility on the Professors of the University of Krakew in 1535 (1858; Krakew, Jagiellonian U., Mus. F.A.). After studying in Munich (1859) under the history painter Hermann Anschetz (1802-80) and then briefly and less successfully in Vienna, Matejko returned to Krak?w, where he was based for the rest of his life. In 1860 Matejko issued an illustrated album, Ubiory w Polsce (later editions 1875 and 1901), a project reflecting his intense interest in historical records of all kinds and his desire to promote such interest among the Polish people in an effort to intensify their patriotic feelings. This role first became widely associated with Matejko with his painting of Stanczyk (1862; Warsaw, N. Mus.), the court jester to King Sigismund I (1437-1548), to whom Matejko gave his own features. The jester is presented as a symbol of the nation's conscience
The Battle of Grunwald,
The Battle of Grunwald, oil on canvas, 1878, 426 x 987 cm, National Museum in Warsaw.