Biography and information

Stanislav Shukalsky (Stanisław Szukalski, Warta, Russian Empire, December 13, 1893 - May 19, 1987, California, USA) Is an American painter and sculptor of Polish origin.

Features of the work of Stanislav Shukalsky. The artist intended to create a new Polish art based on national mythology and history, he came up with his own pseudoscientific historical theory of Zermatism, which asserted that all human culture originated from Easter Island after the flood. But people - the descendants of the "pure creatures" of Lemuria and Atlantis - are involved in the eternal struggle with the humanoid yeti from the Himalayas and their hybrids with humans ("sons of the yeti"). Shukalsky illustrated these fabrications with his works, such as "Wrestling" (1917), "Atlantis" (1910s), "Flooded city" (1954).


Stanislav Szukalski was born on the territory of what is now Poland, but since childhood he lived alternately in his homeland, then in the USA. He studied at the Krakow Academy of Arts, where he won two gold medals, and in 1925, at the International Exhibition of Contemporary Decorative Arts in Paris, he received the Grand Prix for bronze, an honorary diploma for an architectural project and a Gold Medal for stone carving. In 1934 he was declared Poland's greatest living artist. Most of his intricate paintings and massive sculptures were housed in the Szukalski National Museum in Warsaw.

After the capitulation of Poland in 1939, the Museum of Shukal was destroyed, and the exhibits were destroyed or looted by the Nazis. The artist himself took refuge in the US embassy and, being a citizen of this country, was evacuated along with the staff of the diplomatic mission. He settled in Los Angeles, where he later became friends with the family of George DiCaprio - the father of the famous actor Leonardo DiCaprio.

The artist lived in poverty for many years, worked part-time at film studios, designed sets, sometimes sculpted, painted more. He devoted a significant part of his time to the secrets of the ancient history of mankind, the formation of languages, religions, customs, arts and migration of peoples. He tried to unravel the origin of place names, gods and symbols, which have survived in various forms. The author combined his discoveries into a "proto-language" ("Protong" or "Macimową"), about which he published a monograph in the 1970s.

There are texts written in the 1930s that indicate that Shukalsky held nationalist and anti-Semitic views. However, his close friend and legacy manager Glenn Bray claims that the artist was influenced by "Nationalist fervor that swept Europe, and subsequently its ideology changed"... Shukalsky himself said that when he was at the peak of fame, a Nazi official invited him to create works in honor of Germany, where Hitler was to become one of the main figures. The artist rejected the offer and did not receive any further requests.

After Stanislav Shukalsky's death in 1987, a group of fans scattered his ashes over the extinct Rano Raraku volcano on Easter Island. In 2000, Leonardo DiCaprio sponsored his retrospective at the Laguna Art Museum in California. In the same year, the actor's father published the book "Struggle", for which he wrote a preface in collaboration with his son. Both made by producers the film “Fighting. Life and Lost Art of Stanislav Shukalsky ”, broadcast of which was launched on Netflix on December 21, 2018.

Author: Vlad Maslov