Jan Bołoz Antoniewicz (1858–1922)
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This article aims at portraying the figure of Jan Boloz Antoniewicz (1858–1922), Professor of Art History at the University of Lviv, and one of the founding fathers of Polish art history. The paper focuses on two periods of his life: Boloz’s ‘birth’ as an art historian and the ‘decline’ of his career. Regarding the former, a historical and artistic ‘first text’ by Boloz was subjected to analysis (The medieval sources for the sculptures found on the ivory casket in the treasury of the Cathedral on Wawel Hill, 1885). Regarding the second period, his ‘final text’ (Opatowski Lament and its creator, 1922). In the text, emphasis is placed on characterizing Boloz’s attitude which resulted from his general outlook on life, and belongs to the realm of psychology of academic scholarship, rather than methodology of research. Boloz as a scholar–creator was fully formed, and it is from this that other separate scholarly personalities were born, sometimes in keeping with his research interests and his intuitive approach to art, with direct experience of the work of art at its core, and sometimes quite the opposite – relating to other areas and research approaches. Nevertheless, Boloz’s ‘methodology’ can be contained within well–known categories: form–genesis–source–influence–development–originality–genius–masterpiece. It fits well within its time, when the old tradition of great scholars who were culturally and historically oriented was being dismantled in favour of the new trend, fitting for researchers of his generation, which aimed at developing one’s own paradigm of an increasingly autonomous discipline, emancipated from history, philology and aesthetics.
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