Establishment and reactivation of TPMNS
Society of Friends of the National Museum in Szczecin (Towarzystwo Przyjaciół Muzeum Narodowego w Szczecinie – TPMNS) was established on March 19th 2008. The founders determined the main objective of the society as supporting the activity of the National Museum in Szczecin and involvement in its further development. In the same year the Society began the cooperation with INVESTA Szczecin S.A. company, which donated funds for a purchase of an artwork for the collection of the Szczecin Museum. On account of this donation, the Museum bought a precious painting – Peasant Family in a Room by August Ludwig Most – the most outstanding 19th century artist related to Szczecin and Pomerania.
Despite establishing and registering of the Society and its lofty idea, TPMNS has not began its statutory activites in fact. A turning point was a session of the General Meeting of the Society Members on May 8th 2013. A successful attempt to reactivate the Society was made then. A new Board was established, with the President Edward Osina – a Szczecin businessman and renown art-enthusiast, awarded Szczecin Cultural Patron of 2010 title by the President of the city.
The firs result of the functioning of reactivated Society was a purchase of precious Portrait of the Kühn Family by August Ludwig Most on December 2nd 2014, at an auction in a Berlin auction house Auctionata. The purchase was aiming at enriching the collection of works of this artist, which had been created for many years by the National Museum in Szczecin. The painting, commissioned in 1844 by a Szczecin counsellor Emil Kühn, was painted in oil on canvas of 55 x 68,5 and signed in the bottom-left corner: "LMost 1844". The work was mentioned, among others, in August Ludwig Most’s works catalogue made in 1937 by his grandson Peter Paul Most. Following a convention of Biedermeier indoor genre scene, the work is a stately portrait of the commissioner's family.
Dr. Ewa Gwiazdowska and Dr. Dariusz Kacprzak describe the purchased artwork:
"The painting, exceptional among August Ludwig’s Most output, illustrating an admirable, wealthy, large city bourgeoisie family, is a combination of representativeness of a group portrait and anecdotal nature characteristic for an indoor genre scene. Universal ideas of burgeoisie ethos were illustrated in a form of a story, referring to the taste of the age and decorative needs of contemporary viewers. The artistry of painter’s workshop, way of operating the light, diligence of modeling, work on the picture details, confirm the bloom of the painter’s creativity in 1840s, when artist could work peacefully, with his family provided with income on account on his position of drawing teacher in Marienstiftsgymnasium in Szczecin".
In April 2015 the Society purchased another artwork for the National Museum in Szczein – this time the choice was Jacques Chapiro’s Portrait –Still Life with Vincent van Gogh’s Portrait (oil, canvas, 50x73 cm; author’s inscription on the reverse of the canvas: "Jacques Chapiro / 5 rue Barrault / 1937 Paris XIII / Portrait").
Dr. Szymon Piotr Kubiak describes the purchased painting:
"Jacques Chapiro (Ya’akov Chapiro), was born on June 13th 1897 in a Jewish family living in Latvian Daugavpils. He began his artistic education at the age of ten in his father’s carving workshop. Since 1915 he attended Fine Arts School in Kharkiv. Three years later he moved to Kiev academy. Since 1925 he lived in Paris, where he linked up with bohemia gathered around famous La Ruche studio in Montparnasse. Apart from the Latvian (who romanized the spelling of his surname) there lived, among others, Amadeo Modigliani, Chaim Soutine, Marc Chagall, Constantin Brâncuşi, Fernand Léger and Marie Laurencin.
Chapiro’s paintings reflected particularly expressionist tendencies of that circle, members of which considered themselves van Gogh's inheritors. This spiritual legacy is testified by, most of all, still life with scattered books, title of which points at two classical images shown here: young Rembrandt’s Self-Portrait (1630, Nationalmuseum, Stockholm) and famous van Gogh’s Self-Portrait with bandaged ear and a pipe (1889, Stavros Niarchos Collection, Athenes). In this way, a work by Dutch master – through a work by other artist – again found itself in the Szczecin Museum".
The Society of Friends of the National Museum in Szczecin is planning further purchases, with particular emphasis on works created in the 19th century and the first half of the 20th century. The Society provides patronage for, being currently created by Szczecin Museum, Gallery of European Art, which will include works from the Museum own collection and successively obtained deposites – most of all, from TPMNS own collection.
Aims and actions
The main objective of the Society is permanent support of the activity of the National Museum in Szczecin and involvement in its further development. These aims are implemented in various fields, mainly by:
- purchase of artworks and their lending or donation to the National Museum in Szczecin,
- arranging events and actions aiming at exhibiting, promoting and supporting art and artistic, historical and social education,
- supporting scientific work in the field of art and the history of Szczecin and its cultural relics.
Financing of the statutory activities
The character of the Society statutory activities, including most of all artwork purchase, involves considerable funds. Most of them are yearly membership fees paid by TPMNS Members, both individuals and companies. Part of the funds are obtained from institutions, which, not being the Society members themselves, have decided to support it with donations.
Authorities of the Society
According to the statute of the Society of Friends of the National Museum in Szczecin, the authorities of TPMNS are the Board and Audit Commitee, consisting of:
The Board of TPMNS:
- Edward Osina – the President,
- Elżbieta Andrysiak-Mamos – Vice-President,
- Danuta Falkowska – Vice-President,
- Elżbieta Malanowska – Vice-President,
- Maria Niewęgłowska – Vice-President,
- Piotr Szalewicz – Vice-President,
- Marek Mikołajczyk - Vice-President,
- Agnieszka Herok – Treasurer,
- Maciej Luszawski – Secreatry.
Audit Commitee of TPMNS:
- Agnieszka Kowalska – Commitee Member,
- Wojciech Bal – Commitee Member,
- Władysław Walawko – Commitee Member.