Vznik Polského domu v Moravské Ostravě: lidé, místo, stavba

Title in English The Establishment of the Polish House in Moravská Ostrava: the People, the Place, the Building


Type Chapter of a book
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Arts

Description The people connected with the establishment of the Polish House – doctors Wacław Seidl and Anton Knapczyk, mining engineers and politicians Franciszek Brzezowski and Henryk Schrott, teacher Andrzej Słowik, architect Stanisław Bandrowski, etc. – are representatives of the Polish national revival movement in the coal-mining region of Ostrava and Karviná, which, from various reasons (mainly due to the fear of Czechization of the Polish natives in the region), rejected any alliance with Czechs, and cooperating instead with Germans. The mutual relationships of the three nationalities were, of course, much more complicated, as it was shown at the official opening of the Polish House in September 1900, where all deputies of the three groups met in harmony. The ground for the Polish House was bought in a new part of Moravská Ostrava, in a quarter that had been built since the 1890s on greenfield land. It was a quarter of mixed social structure, the prevailing stratum being workers and craftspeople, and mostly residential, with the exception of minor workshops, grocery shops and the developing industries near the railway. From the functional point of view, the Polish House embodied an important element of a public institution oriented mainly towards culture, meetings, and education (there was also a restaurant inside). Moreover, altogether with the opposite spa belonging to Wacław Seidl, which was created by the same architect, it also represented a significant architectural landmark. Stefan Badowski – a. k. a. Stanisław Bandrowski –, architect of the Polish House, studied architecture probably in Warsaw, and his first design of the Polish House was made in the historicising style. However, the plans were soon changed into an interesting variation on the art of a Cracovian architect Teodor Talowski. That was to emphasise the connection between the Poles in Ostrava and the town of Cracow, and to express Polishness through art and architecture.
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