Benedyktowicz, Ludomir, Polish painter, graphic artist, writer and chess player, member of the “Munich School”. 1868-72: student at the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich. *15.8.1844 Świniary, †14.12.1926 Lemberg/Lwów (today Lviv). After completing school in Warsaw he starts a training course in forestry. He loses both hands as a partisan in the 1863 January Uprising, is forced to abandon his forestry course and enrols in the Warsaw drawing class/Klasa Rysunkowa under Wojciech Gerson (1831-1901). Because of the political persecution following the January Uprising he moves to study in Munich. On the 24.10.1868, equipped with a grant from the Warsaw Society of the Friends of the Fine Arts/Towarzystwo Zachęty Sztuk Pięknych he enrols in the antiquity class at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Munich under Hermann Anschütz (1802-1880), Sandór (Alexander von) Wagner (1838-1919) and Otto Seitz (1846-1912). After returning to Warsaw 1873 he visits the tombs of comrades who had fallen during the January Uprising, is arrested for political agitation and briefly imprisoned in the Warsaw citadel. After his release he continues his studies at the Cracow Academy of Fine Arts/Akademia Sztuk Pięknych w Krakowie under Jan Matejko (1838-1893). In 1876 he marries, and opens his own workshop. Before the outbreak of the First World War he moves with his family to Lemberg. During the war he serves as a Lieutenant in the army. After the death of his wife he moves into a home for veterans in 1916. Benedyktowicz paints idyllic landscapes in the style of Munich open-air painting influenced by the Barbizon School: mainly forest motifs, sunrises and sunsets, village idylls, genre paintings, religious scenes and pictures in oils and watercolours containing human figures. In the open-air he draws landscapes and groups of trees for study material. As a writer he publishes three volumes of poetry on his 40th, 50th and 60th birthday respectively; and in his capacity as an art critic, a book on the painter Stanisław Witkiewicz (1851-1915). In 1893 he co-founds the Cracow Chess Club/Krakowski Klub Szachistów, and becomes its President and Honorary President. After moving to Lemberg he joins the Hetman chess club in the town and is made an honorary member. His works can be found in Lviv and in the national museums in Cracow, Posen/Poznań and Warsaw.
Group exhibitions: 1870-1910 Cracow, 1875-1918 Lemberg: Society of the Friends of the Fine Arts/Towarzystwo Zachęty Sztuk Pięknych
Further Reading: Saur Allgemeines Künstlerlexikon, vol. 9, Munich/Leipzig 1994, p. 32; Halina Stępień/Maria Liczbińska: Artyści polscy w środowisku monachijskim w latach 1828-1914. Materiały źródłowe, Warsaw 1994, p. 9, 29; Halina Ste̜pień: Artyści polscy w środowisku monachijskim w latach 1856-1914 (Studia z historii sztuki / Instytut Sztuki, Polska Akademia Nauk, 50), Warsaw 2003; Egzotyczna Europa. Kraj urodzenia na płótnach polskich monachijczyków/Das exotische Europa. Heimatvisionen auf den Gemälden der polnischen Künstler in München, exhibition catalogue. Suwałki 2015
Online: Matriculation data base, Matriculation book 2, Academy of Fine Arts Munich, 02441 Ludwig Benedyktowicz, http://matrikel.adbk.de/matrikel/mb_1841-1884/jahr_1868/matrikel-02441
Jacek Frankowski: L. Benedyktowicz - Powstaniec Styczniowy i wybitny pejzażysta (2010) at: Album Polski, http://albumpolski.pl/artykul/l-benedyktowicz-powstaniec-styczniowy-i-wybitny-pejzazysta
Piotr Czartoryski-Sziler: Ludomir Benedyktowicz - malarz i leśnik, at: Dla Polski, http://archiwum.dlapolski.pl/informacje/Czytaj-art-5364.html
Jacek Frankowski: Ludomir Benedyktowicz (2013), at: Kurier Galicyjski, http://kuriergalicyjski.com/index.php/redakcjapoleca/1758-artysta-niezomny