Jakub Rozalski and the past meeting the present

A few months ago, I discovered this Polish artist named Jakub Rozalski. His work mixes historical agrarian scenes, folkloric elements like werewolves and gnomes, with futuristic mechanical evils. He sets his work in particular years, such as a series of paintings about “1920” as seen in the top image. It is obviously influenced by the history of Poland and the invasions from Germany and Russia. Anyway, it is prophetical of the situation in Ukraine. He just finished a painting (image below) that brings this strange world and the present world together. I’ve read entirely too many books about Eastern Europe in the Second World War, and boy if there aren’t too many parallels between the past and the present to be named. Rozaski gives his view of it here: https://jrozalski.com/projects/zDKAwm

There is also something person in this art and in the situation in Ukraine. My Polish side of the family is Kozak. I’m not sure if this is accurate, but I’ll take this etymology: “Ukrainian, Polish, Sorbian, Czech, Slovak (Kozák), and Hungarian (Kozák) : ethnic name for a Cossack, a member of a people descended from a group of runaway serfs who set up a semi-independent military republic in Ukraine in the 15th and 16th centuries. The Cossacks became noted for their military prowess. The word Cossack is of Turkic origin, but most European languages borrowed it from eastern Slavic (Russian, Ukrainian kazák,kozák). This term also came to be used as a nickname for a pert fellow, a devil-may-care blusterer.”

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