Mixing it up: artist blends history, legends and science fiction for spectacular results

Różalski’s work often mixes flavours of traditional rural scenes with dark science fiction. Jakub Rozalski/Facebook

A Polish artist has presented an alternate version of European history through imaginative and mind-boggling graphics, where giant robots loom threateningly over peasants tending to their fields or where Warsaw Uprising combatants face enormous and deadly Nazi-bots.

In this painting entitled ‘1920 - final charge’ the artist commemorates the anniversary of the Battle of Warsaw.Jakub Różalski/Facebook

Jakub Różalski, the man behind the conceptual graphics for the Hollywood blockbuster ‘Kong: Skull Island’, has captivated audiences in Poland and abroad with his rich imagination and depictions of clashes between worlds.

The artist has captivated audiences in Poland and abroad with his rich imagination and depictions of clashes between worlds.Jakub Rozalski/Facebook

In the universe created by the graphic artist, idyllic landscapes reminiscent of the 18th and 19th century countryside portrayed in the work of artists Józef Chełmoński or Aleksander Gierymski are intertwined with rough futuristic machines. 

‘Mermaid of Warsaw’.Jakub Rozalski/Facebook

Różalski talks about authentic events, most often from the early 20th century, using modern machines to strengthen his point and enhance the horrors of war.

Różalski talks about authentic events, most often from the early 20th century, using modern machines to strengthen his point and enhance the horrors of war.Jakub Rozalski/Facebook

Różalski, who goes under the name Mr. Werewolf, doesn’t hide his fascination with fantasy, science fiction, myths and legends. On his website, the artist describes himself as: “Independent artist, painter and storyteller. Creator of the 'World of 1920+' (Scythe, Iron Harvest) and 'Wolfpack'.” The board game ‘Scythe’ and video game ‘Iron Harvest’ are rooted in the ‘1920+’ universe created by Różalski.

Różalski, who goes under the name Mr. Werewolf, doesn’t hide his fascination with fantasy, science fiction, myths and legends.Jakub Rozalski/Facebook

It presents an alternative history of Europe after World War I, inspired by the Polish-Bolshevik war and the Battle of Warsaw in 1920. The graphics for the project were published online, making him instantly famous, due to the easily recognisable style and scenes affecting the viewers’ imagination and understanding of history.

The ‘1920+’ universe created by Różalski presents an alternative history of Europe after World War I.Jakub Rozalski/Facebook

Różalski, born in 1981, comes from Szczecin, though currently he lives and works in Kraków. Although in the past he did different jobs, from designing jewellery to working in a corporation, his main interest has always been art. 

A picture commemorating a battle during the November Uprising.Jakub Rozalski/Facebook

The ‘1920+’ creator started with drawing and painting on paper or canvas, but later moved onto computer graphics. Since 2002 he’s been working as an artist and graphic designer, and had several exhibitions of his work in places such as France and Poland. In 2018, Różalski published a book featuring his work titled ‘Howling at the moon’.