Arrow Polish National Opera exhibits Otto Axer’s works

17 Mar, 2024
Polish National Opera exhibits Otto Axer’s works
© Otto Axer / Polish National Opera

Otto Axer (1906–1983) was one of the most intriguing Polish set designers of the second half of the 20th century. A painter, graphic artist and illustrator, he studied at the Kraków Academy of Fine Arts. He trained with Weiss, Frycz and Pankiewicz, in Kraków and Paris. He debuted in stage design in 1932, at the Municipal Theatre in Lviv, where he collaborated with Leon Schiller and Andrzej Pronaszko, among others. From then on, theatre became his greatest passion.

After the war, Axer worked as a set designer at the Polish Theatre in Warsaw. He has collaborated with the Polish Army Theatre in Łódź. He also worked as a guest set designer at the Powszechny Theatre  in Warsaw, the Jaracz Theatre in Łódź, the Contemporary Theatre and Polish National Opera in Warsaw, the Wyspiański Theatre in Katowice and the Osterwa Theatre in Lublin.

Although Axer’s paintings were of marginal importance in his extremely diverse theatrical activity, they retained a distinctive character. The artist focused primarily on chamber forms based around his earlier drawing studies. They were mainly represented by still lifes and figural scenes devoid of excess elements.

The exhibition entitled “Malarski teatr Ottona” (“Otto’s Painterly Theatre”) will be open to visitors from March 20 until June 30, 2024 in the lower foyer of the Polish National Opera. The show will feature oil paintings and drawings, as well as stage designs and costumes from the collection of the Theatre Museum of the Polish National Opera.

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