Czesław Słania

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Czesław Słania 'ʧɛswaf' slaɲa (born October 22, 1921 in Czeladź , † March 17, 2005 in Krakow ) was an engraver of postage stamps and banknotes .

The Royal Swedish, Danish and Monegasque court engraver Czesław Słania is known all over the world for his artistic achievements and his craftsmanship. He engraved more than 1,000 postage stamps, a world record that is also in the Guinness Book . On average, he needed less than a month for a postage stamp. This makes him one of the fastest of his guild, which includes perhaps 100 artists worldwide who create steel engraving templates for the gravure printing of high-quality stamp issues .

There are several associations in the world that deal with the work of Słania. Collecting his postage stamps is a specialty of philately .

life and work

Słania's “Ram” from 1979 for the Faroe Islands

Czesław Słania was born in the small Polish mining town of Czeladź. His ability to work in a small format was already evident in his childhood, as he used banknotes as a template for his artistic developments. He also drew miniatures of portraits and horses, as well as drawings by his classmates. From 1947 he studied at the Art Academy in Cracow , one of the most recognized academies for graphic arts . While still a student he was offered a job in the Polish state printing house, where he worked for six years. His first postage stamp came out in 1951.

In 1956, 35-year-old Czesław Słania moved to Sweden and from 1959 began working for the Swedish Post. He has been engraving stamps for the Swedish Post for over 40 years. He also has many other countries around the world as regular stamp customers. He was appointed court engraver in Sweden, Denmark and Monaco and has received numerous awards for his precise engravings.

In addition to these three countries, he set stamps for Åland , Australia , Belgium , China , Germany (1995 the stamp for Alfred Nobel , which was also issued in Sweden in the same form), Estonia , Faroe Islands (100 stamps since 1976), France , Gibraltar , Greenland , Great Britain , Hong Kong , Ireland , Iceland , Jamaica , Kazakhstan , Latvia , Lithuania , Marshall Islands , New Zealand , Portugal , San Marino , Singapore , Spain , Switzerland , Thailand , Tunisia , USA , United Nations , Vatican City and his home country Poland .

Czesław Słania banknotes are available in Argentina , Belgium , Brazil , Dominican Republic , Israel , Canada , Kazakhstan , Lithuania , Portugal and Venezuela .

He has also engraved numerous private works that he created “for pleasure”, including a series with famous film actresses, a series with world champions in heavyweight boxing from 1889 to 1964 and z. B. a portrait of Pope John Paul II , which was auctioned in 2002 at his request for the benefit of needy Polish children.

Słania's versatility becomes apparent when you consider the wide range of subjects he works with, from royal portraits to flora and fauna to movie stars. He even had time and space to personalize his tiny works of art, e.g. B. a caricature of yourself or names of friends.

“It's a pleasure that the motifs are so varied,” says Słania. “That makes the engraver's work very exciting. I like most when a motif contains many different details, e.g. B. Horses, clouds, skin, a small brooch ... that makes the work wonderfully complicated, just like with my 1,000. Postage stamp. “His 1,000. The stamp was published in 2000 for the Swedish postal administration and shows the painting Glorious exploits of Swedish kings by David Klöcker Ehrenstrahl (1695), which hangs in Drottningholm Palace . At 60 × 81 mm, it is the largest intaglio stamp of all time and has won awards worldwide.

In 1999 Słania was made an honorary citizen of his native city of Czeladź.

Web links

Commons : Czesław Słania  - album with pictures, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Image of the 1000th stamp, produced for the Swedish postal administration. Retrieved February 7, 2019 .