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When you take a walk around Krynica's city centre, you can't miss the beautiful turquoise Romanowka villa which houses the Nikifor Museum, a place giving an interesting insight into the life and work of Krynica's most renowned, yet outsider artist, Nikifor.
The Nikifor Museum is relatively small, with only a short introductory text in Polish, English and German. The staff speaks Polish and the titles of paintings are only in Polish. Especially interesting are the displayed pictures of Nikifor himself, a bit detached from the outside world in most of them, and several photos of Krynica during the 50s and 60s, allowing a peek into the town's life in that time. Before entering the actual collection of paintings, visitors can have a look at facsimiles of Nikifor's scratch books, and personal belongings, like a radio, a suitcase and a walking stick. Besides, covers of international art magazines and poems written about Nikifor prove that the artist caused a small sensation with his naive art. When you finally arrive in the room where the colourful paintings are exhibited, you begin to understand the appeal of Nikifor's works. Although naive and produced with simple materials like water colour and crayons, they show an unusual view on the world Nikifor lived in. The artist depicted everday envionments like railways, fields and churches, but the the use of symmetry, unusual perspectives and bright colours lets us see them in a different light. He also created a
series of self-portraits, some of which show him in sacral and military scenes. The last room of the museum features changing exhibitions of nonprofessional contemporary
Editor & Krynica Local
I went to this museum some 18 years ago as I love Nikofor's works, and I have two of them purchased at auction in Warsaw.
Unfortunately his is much forged, so his prices are very low.
If visiting the museum, try for a longer stay at one of the many spas in the town which are world class and cheaper than Europe (I hope, as they once were).