In 1958 Poland joined the Corpus Vitrearum Medii Aevi, an organisation created six years earlier on the initiative of Prof. Hans R. Hahnloser during the International Congress of Art History in Amsterdam in 1952, under the auspices of the International Union of Academies (UAI) and the International Committee for Art History (CIHA). The primary goal of the CVMA was to initiate comprehensive research on medieval stained glass. With time, the scope of research was extended to include early modern glass (which was reflected in the organisation’s changed name, currently, Corpus Vitrearum – CV), and since 2016 it encompasses also stained glass dating from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
Poland was represented in the CVMA by Prof. Władysław Tatarkiewicz, Prof. Stanislaw Lorentz, and Prof. Jan Białostocki, among others, as well as by scholars who worked on the Polish volume of the CVMA, namely, Prof. Lech Kalinowski (subsequently President of the Polish national committee), Dr Hanna Pieńkowska and Helena Małkiewiczówna. In 1998, the Polish committee organized the 19th International Colloquium of the CVMA, entitled Stained Glass as Monumental Painting, which was held in Cracow.
In 2005, after the death of Professor Lech Kalinowski (15 June 2004), Professor Wojciech Bałus became the chairman of the Polish CV committee whose members are: Danuta Czapczyńska-Kleszczyńska, Beata Fekecz-Tomaszewska, Elżbieta Gajewska-Prorok, Dr Dobrosława Horzela, Dr Marta Kamińska (treasurer), Dr Magda Ławicka, Sławomir Oleszczuk, Dr Tomasz Szybisty (secretary) and Dr Joanna Utzig.
The vigorous activity of the Corpus Vitrearum Poland has indirectly contributed to the foundation of the Centre for Stained Glass Studies based at the Art History Institute of the Jagiellonian University. The Centre was inaugurated in 2017 pursuant to an agreement between the Jagiellonian University and the Academy of Fine Arts in Cracow. In the same year a scholarly conference entitled “Stained Glass from c. 1800 to 1945: Terminology – Periodization – Forms”, organised by the newly established Centre in collaboration with the Corpus Vitrearum Poland, took place. Apart from Polish scholars, among its participants were stained-glass specialists from Austria, Spain, Germany, the United States, Switzerland and Great Britain. Further information about the current activity of the CVP and the Centre for Stained Glass studies can be found on our website under “What we do”.Read More o