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The Walery Rzewuski Museum of History of Photography in Cracow

The Walery Rzewuski Museum of History of Photography in Cracow

16 Jozefitow St.

Opening hours:
Wednesday – Friday: 11.00 a.m.–6.00 p.m.
Saturday – Sunday: 10.00 a.m.–3.30 p.m.
(free admission on Sunday)
Monday, Tuesday: closed
The Walery Rzewuski Museum of the History of Photography is the only institution in Poland in this line and was founded in December 1986. The museum gathers, processes, stores, preserves and provides cultural goods from the field of photographic history and technique as well as from artistic photography. It conducts scientific, educational, expositional and editorial activity.

The collection, apart from stereoscopic photography, autochromes,  daguerreotypes, ambrotypes, albumen photos, glass plates and celluloid film, also covers a rich set of cameras and photo atelier equipment. An important part of the gathered photos is documentation of the historic events and the history of culture. The most treasured are the photos that commemorate the siege of Paris in 1871, the defence of Poland in 1939, as well as the pictures of the Italian cities and coloured albumens of Japanese landscapes. In the possession of the museum is a collection of the first colour slides – autochromes dating from 1908–1912 made by Tadeusz Rzaca.

The permanent exhibition “From the history of photography” reveals issues from the history of the Polish art of photography. It presents the output of Polish photographers – from craftsmen of the turn of the 19th–20th century aspiring to be called artists, to representatives of the Polish and Wilno (Vilnius) photography clubs, active during the interwar period. The subjects of the exposition are portraits, landscape and ethnographic photos, pictures of architecture, press illustrations and reportage photos. The exposition touches issues connected with the technique and technology, ornamentation and use of, and even with collecting and storing photography. On display there is a copy of the first camera from 1839, massive atelier cameras used for taking pictures on silver-plated brass plates, and later on glass plates. Also there we can find examples of travelling cameras, which were the most widely used cameras of the 19th century and survived in almost unchanged form to the 1930s. The exposition features the first photos (daguerreotypes), glass photographs (ambrotypes), on canvas (panotypes), on metal plate (ferrotypes), and most of all photos on paper.
  • Program regionalny
  • województwo maloposkie
  • Unia Europejska
The following Project is cofinanced by the European Union under the Małopolska Regional Operational Programme for the years 2007 – 2013