Exhibition of Poland’s mountain ‘wonder woman’ Wanda Rutkiewicz goes on show at PAP HQ
A display of unique archival photographs from the life of one the world’s most distinguished mountaineers is on show at Polish Press Agency on Warsaw’s Bracka Street until the end of February.
Entitled ‘Passion, hardship and a love for the mountains – Wanda Rutkiewicz on unknown photographs’, the exhibition presents a fascinating collection of photographs from the Polish Press Agency’s photographic archives, with images from Rutkiewicz’s everyday life as well as her expeditions.
Alongside conquering Mount Everest as the first woman from Europe, Rutkiewicz was also the first woman in the world to reach the summit of K2, the world’s second highest mountain an ‘eight- thousander’ in the Karakoram mountain range.
Katarzyna Liebrecht, director of the Polish Press Agency’s Photo Archive said: “We see Wanda Rutkiewicz in her element, on photos which tell us a lot about her life.
“They document her passions, show her during climbs and her attempts at reaching summits, but they have an addition quality, because they show the prose of her everyday life at her mountain base, amongst many Polish mountaineers, amongst others Jerzy Kukuczka or Krzysztof Wielicki.
“Looking at these photographs, one would like to be one of their subjects, the photos have a magnetic quality, they attract. The photos are of high interest because they communicate passion, hardship and a love for the mountains”.
Some of the photos in the display have not been previously published and, alongside photographs from the Polish Press Agency Archive, 11 of the 50 photographs chosen for the display have been taken from the Jerzy Kukuczka Polish Mountaineering Foundation and private collections.
Liebrecht added: “The photos are in the process of being scanned, cleaned, described and made available on our webpage www.zdjecia.pap.pl.
“Here, institutions such as publishers, but also collectors and businesses, can buy the rights to their publications for other purposes. We are continually expanding our collections, so it is worth inquiring about photographs of specific events, places or people. We invite everyone for collaboration and contact with the PAP Photo Archive”.
This year marks the 30th anniversary of Rutkiewicz’s death and the Polish Sejm has chosen her as one of the patrons for the year 2022.
The display of archival photos from Rutkiewicz’s life will be available for public viewing until the end of February 2022.