Join the Army. Defend your Homeland

Stanisław Sawiczewski1920

The National Museum in Warsaw

The National Museum in Warsaw

Stanisław Sawiczewski (1866–1943), draughtsman, illustrator and painter, Artur Grottger's (1837–1867) nephew. Studied in the School of Fine Arts in Cracow, also in Munich and Vienna. Collaborated (from 1918) as an illustrator with "Tygodnik Ilustrowany" – a popular Polish weekly magazine covering cultural and social topics, issued in Warsaw in the years 1859–1939. He worked for the Polish Volunteer Army [Polish: Armia Ochotnicza], designing propaganda leaflets and posters. The showcased poster, printed in the B. Wierzbicki's Printing House in Warsaw and commissioned by the General Inspectorate of the Volunteer Army, comes from this very period of Sawiczewski's activity.

The Volunteer Army was created as a response to the address to the Polish nation by the Council of National Defence [Polish: Rada Obrony Państwa] in July 1920, calling on Poles to defend their Homeland from the Bolshevik threat. The army was commanded by Gen. Józef Haller – depicted on the poster in the Blue Army [Polish: Błękitna Armia] general uniform, with his right hand raised and pointing at the audience. The direct character of this gesture is supposed to strengthen the message motivating the citizens to take action: "Join the Army. Defend your Homeland".

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  • Title: Join the Army. Defend your Homeland
  • Creator: Stanislaw Sawiczewski
  • Date: 1920
  • Inv. no.: Pl.8984/1
  • Type: Posters
  • Medium: lithography