Adam Bunsch. Born 1986 in Krakow, his father Alojzy is a professor of sculpture and his mother the daughter of a famous Polish architect. He studies at the Krakow School of Fine Arts under Jozef Mehoffer and with a spell in Vienna during World War I simultaneously pursuing a philosophy degree at the Jagiellonian University. World War I intervenes and he joins the Austrian Army and than the ranks of the newly formed Polish Army defending the city of Lwow. He is able to resume his studies and by 1921 he takes up his first appointment in the School of Industrial Art in Bielsko Biala. He will exhibit, win prizes and become a powerful force of Krakow intellectual life publishing articles and plays (he authors 30 plays of which 6 have been published), he designs costumes, scenery. Watercolors, pastels, oil and pencil drawings are his tools. Above all he is accomplished printmaker drawing inspiration from the Japanese of woodcuts.
An already established, well known and respected artist and playwright in pre World War II Poland, Bunsch fights in defense of Poland in September 1939, crossing the border with his unit into Hungary from where, following a short period of internment, he reaches and joins the ranks of the Polish Army on French soil in spring of 1940. He leaves behind his beloved wife Ludwika and his four children Alojzy, Franciszek, Helana and Adam in Nazi Occupied Krakow. France falls by June of 1940 and Bunsch again makes his escape this time to Britain. Stationed in Forfar as part of the 10th Motorized Cavalry Brigade under the command of General Maczek, he specialized in portraiture, his pictures being often used by the Polish Army as presentation pieces. He sketches incessantly. His drawings are presented to Queen Elizabeth, the future Queen Mother and today are to be found in the Royal Collection at Windsor.
His life in Poland is well documented thereafter. 44 churches in Poland are adorned to this day by his stained glass windows and the polish Museum in Warsaw has acquires many of his war time works. The Polish Museum of America in Chicago owns his works from the New York World’s Fair of 1939. He will exhibit over the world and will live surrounded by his beloved family and die in 1969.
Text compiled by Monika A.M. Skowronska –
Vice Chairman of The Polish Social and Cultural Association Ltd