The locality of Krajenka, 20 kms to the north-east of Pila (voivodeship of Greater Poland) is the site of an extant western wing of a castle erected in about 1542-1550 for Janusz Koscielecki, the 'starosta' general of Greater Poland. In 1774 the then owner, Princess Anna Sulkowska, had the building adapted for the purposes of a parish church, functioning up to this day. The solid of the wing was left intact, the ceiling and the partition walls were pulled down, and a wooden pseudo-ceiling was installed. Apart from the ceiling, no corrections were made, and only the window openings were walled up. Consequently, the former corner (south-eastern chamber on the highest storey of the castle preserved remnants of murals, discovered by the author of this article. The murals depict allegories of The Sense of Hearing, The Sense of Smell and The Sense of Touch, while the missing walls probably displayed allegories of The Sense of Taste and The Sense of Sight. The figural likenesses are framed by oval tondos amidst imitations of a garden treillage. The paintings are an almost literal copy of compositions by Franz Floris (1519-1570), popularized in etchings by the Antwerp-based printing house of Hieronymus Cock since 1561. Owing to the different shapes, the painter working in Krajenka introduced assorted changes in the background. The author of the article puts the date of the murals' origin in a period spanning from 1560 and 1580, although he does not exclude the possibility of a highly later date (albeit not exceeding the second half of the sixteenth century). He also refers to other, extremely scarce examples of Renaissance murals in Greater Poland in order to emphasize the rank of his discovery, regardless of the considerable damage incurred to the murals in Krajenka.
dr hab., historyk sztuki, profesor Uniwersytetu im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu, absolwent tej uczelni, kieruje Pracownią Historii Sztuki Starożytnej Instytutu Historii Sztuki UAM. Zajmuje się architekturą i rzeźbą antyczną („Anatolian Sepulchral Stelae in Roman Times”, Poznań 1991; „Symbolika architektury greckiej”, Poznań 1995), a także niektórymi zagadnieniami sztuki późniejszych epok, w tym badaniami architektonicznymi („Dwór w Nietuszkowie”, Poznań 2001; „Zamek w Chodzieży”, Chodzież 2005; „Zamek w Krajence”, Poznań 2008).
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