Ewelina Pęksowa was born in Zakopane in 1923, and died in 2015. She inherited her passion for art from her father, Stanisław Zubek, a well-known ski maker and talented woodcarver, who made traditional Podhale tools and house furniture. Ewelina Pęksowa embarked on her artistic path in the 1950s working with wood; later she painted icons and explored her own technique. In 1968 she began painting on glass, shaping her artistic skills independently. The artist, inspired by old folk painting, finally created her unique style and characteristic range of colours. She used various shades of red, yellow, blue and green, as well as broken white, black, brown and gold. The works of Ewelina Pęksowa are characterized by themes typical of the Podhale region: local folklore, landscape with architecture, figures of saints, Madonnas, biblical and life scenes. Her works also include historical paintings, which is quite unusual for this genre. Ewelina Pęksowa presented her work at fifty five individual exhibitions and over three hundred collective exhibitions in Poland and around the world. She took part in many folk art competitions, with hers always placing among the highest ranked works. . Her pieces can be found in all museums of ethnography in Poland and they are prized assets of private and public collections all over the world. Moreover, Stations of the Cross painted by the artist adorn the interiors of several churches and chapels. In 1978, the Minister of Culture and Art granted her the right to use the official title of a graphic artist, a privilege usually reserved for trained artists. She has been awarded numerous prizes for her artistic activity, including the Oskar Kolberg Prize (1976) in recognition of her contribution to folk culture, the State Award (first grade) of the Minister of Culture and Art (1983) for outstanding achievements in artistic creativity, the Medal and Honorary Title “Merit to Culture” (1986), the Commander’s Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta (2008), and the Gold Medal “Merit to Culture – Gloria Artis”(2009).
photos: Grażyna Cisło