Tuesday marked the first of five auctions of one of Poland’s greatest private art collections. Grażyna Kulczyk, the former wife of one of the richest men in Poland, earned her own fortune by wisely investing her divorce settlement. Today, she is a philanthropist and investor in her own right, who’s longstanding appreciation for the arts has seen her become one of the country’s most valuable private collectors.
The decision to sell a significant portion of her collection came as a natural next step for Ms. Kulczyk, who hopes to use her resources to support women in the art world and continue to promote Polish artists.
“Over the years, these works brought me a lot of joy and served their purpose in my collection. It is now time for them to move on; I don’t want to appropriate them. I think they can start or develop a lot more collections, inspire other people, and help other collectors promote art,” said Kulczyk.
“I am going to follow my path in the direction that has been closest to me for a long time: I’m going to commit 100% of my energy to support women in the art world. (…) I very much believe in the power of art. I am convinced that this force must be used, on the one hand, to sow ferment and generate an energy impulse for other collections; and on the other hand, to support the role and position of women in the modern world,” she continued.
“Today, I can and I want to use my resources to give women a voice. And to this, I will devote the years to come.”
DESA Unicum was an obvious choice for the sale. The auction house is the largest in Poland and prides itself on its high quality of service, knowledge of the art market, experience and expertise. Comprising nearly 200 works the sale of Ms. Kulczyk’s collection has been divided into five thematic auctions, each representing either a particular artist or an overarching theme or genre.
This auction showcases the most important stylistic tendencies of Polish post-war art.
Classics: Tadeusz Kantor
A sale featuring the work of one of Poland’s most appreciated artists – Tadeusz Kantor.
Passion: Markowski, Chlanda, Szewczyk
A selection of works by three artists whom Ms. Kulczyk had a particular affinity for, Markowski, Chlanda and Szewczyk.
This sale focuses on photographic works, which were always of particular interest to the collector.
In this auction, Ms. Kulczyk takes on the role of a curator and patron of the arts. The sale includes works by lesser-known, underappreciated artists, specific to the collector’s eye and taste.
For and interview with the collector, all five auction catalogues and more about the sale click here