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A collection of large and smaller works by Władysław Mirecki, resident artist

Click here to view for details of Władysław Mirecki’s forthcoming exhibition

Holme Valley, Yorkshire 2011

Viaduct with tank traps, 2014, 138 x 138 cms £12,000

First prize winner at Lynn Painter-Stainers Exhibition 2015 at the Mall Galleries, London: Exhibition runs to 21st February, 2015 - exhibition telephone number: 01372 462190 email:

The Bottom of My Garden
Watercolour, 2004
150 x 150 cms

Norton Hall Farm
Watercolour, 2012
34 x 34 cms

Lane Road, Wakes Colne
Watercolour, 2008
100 x 130 cms

Early Autumn, Chappel Viaduct
Watercolour 2007
125 x 150 cms

Beach Hut Areas under Surveillance
Watercolour, 2009
91 x 150 cms

Lunchtime at the Mermaid Café 2010
71 x 120 cms

Walton on the Naze, Cliffs
Watercolour, 2007
50 x 135 cms

Fallen Leaves 2011
90 x 78 cms

Colne Valley View III 2011 (view from Bacon’s Lane)
50 x 150 cms

Cold and Damp, Chappel
Watercolour, 2008
83 x 99 cms

A Pond in the Woods
Watercolour, 2004
113 x 83 cms

Bluebells in Chalkney Wood 2011
80 x 120 cms

The Culvert
Watercolour, 2008
150 x 90 cms

Abbey Ruins, Whitby
Watercolour, 2011
80 x 56 cms

View from Larpool Viaduct towards Whitby
watercolour, 2012
60 x 90 cms

Holme Valley, Yorkshire
Watercolour, 2011
100 x 150 cms


1956 Born Chelmsford, Essex of Polish parentage.
He is self-taught, having painted all his life including his periods gaining his science degree, as an industrial designer and co-proprietor of Chappel Galleries (1986 - March 2010).

New English Art Club, Mall Galleries, London
Epping Forest District Museum “Artists in Essex”
Beecroft Art Gallery, Westcliffe on Sea, Essex 31st Open Exhibition
Chappel Galleries, Essex Solo Exhibition
Foyles Art Gallery, London
Department of Transport art Competition, Mall Galleries, London
Deuxieme Salon Biennale de L’Aquarelle, Hirson, France (Chelmsford 1993)
Essex County Council, Deputy Lord Lieutenant of Essex Commission
Chappel Galleries, Essex10th Anniverary Exhibition: Solo Exhibition
Singer and Friedlander, Sunday Times Exhibition, London
Beecroft Art Gallery, Essex: Open Exhibition
1999 Jiangsu Provincial Art Gallery, Nanjing, China: Solo Exhibition
Chappel Galleries, Essex Solo Exhibition
2002 Chappel Galleries, Essex Blyth Spirit “Walberswick Artists: 1880–2000”
Chappel Galleries, Essex Solo Exhibition
WH Pattersons, London Christmas Mixed Exhibition
Royal Academy, London Summer Exhibition
WH Pattersons, London Christmas Mixed Exhibition
Chappel Galleries, Essex Solo Exhibition
Royal Watercolour Society Open Competition, Bankside Gallery, London.
Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolours, Mall Galleries, London.
Royal Society of British Artists Annual Exhibition Mall Galleries, London: Winner of the Edward Wesson Award.
Beecroft Art Gallery, Westcliffe on Sea, Essex 49th Essex Open Exhibition: Awarded Prize and Shirley Robson Bowl for the best watercolour.
Chappel Galleries, Essex ‘Southwold, the East Coast’.
Sunday Times/Kaupthing Singer & Friedlander, London: 3rd Prize Winner, The Mall Galleries, London.
Lynn Painter-Stainers, London.
Chichester Open Art Exhibition, Chichester.
Royal West of England Academy 155th Autumn Exhibition, Bristol.
New English Art Club, The Mall Galleries, London.
RWS/Sunday Times watercolour competition, Bankside Gallery, London
Lynn Painters-Stainers, London (third prize winner)
Chappel Galleries, Essex Solo Exhibition
Lynn Painter-Stainers, London
Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours 198 Annual Exhibition, London
Eastern Open, King’s Lynn Arts Centre
Sunday Times Watercolour Competition 23rd Year (2nd Prize Winner), Mall Galleries, London
Duncan Campbell Fine Art, London: Solo Exhibition
Work on loan for opening of new branch of Handelsbanken, Colchester
Sunday Times Watercolour Competition in association with Smith and Williamson: The Mall Galleries, London  
Discerning Eye Exhibition: The Mall Galleries, London 10-20 November
Piers Feetham Gallery, London: Solo Exhibition
Lynn Painter Stainers Exhibition, London
Chappel Galleries, Essex: Solo Exhibition
Norwich Castle Open Art Show
Chelmsford Borough Museum: Two Man Exhibition with Paul Rumsey, 9th February to 21st April.
Studio Eleven, Westcliff on Sea, Essex: ‘Kiss the Joy’ mixed exhibition.
Royal Society of British Artists, Annual Exhibition: The Mall Galleries, London.

March 1st-30th ‘…just as it is…’ Chappel Galleries, Essex: Solo Exhibition.

Essex County Council
Jiangsu Province Art Museum, People’s Republic of China
Jiangsu Province Department of Culture, People’s Republic of China
2000, 09
Chelmsford Museums, Essex
Ipswich Borough Council Museums & Galleries, Suffolk
Colchester and Ipswich Museums (on behalf of Colchester Borough Council)
February Edition, Jiangsu Art Monthly
April Edition, Artists & Illustrators Magazine
A Walk in the Country – 32pp Monograph
“Southwold: An Earthly Paradise” by Geoffrey Munn.
Władysław Mirecki at Fifty – 32pp Monograph.
BBC Television Programme: ‘Seven Man-made Wonders of the East’ interview about Chappel Viaduct, showing Mirecki’s paintings depicting the Viaduct.
‘On My Doorstep’: Introduction by Laura Gascoigne published by Chappel Galleries, Essex.
The Spectator “Winter Fine Arts” by Andrew Lambirth November issue.
Jackdaw Magazine “Easel Words” May/June issue.
The Artist Magazine, “Masterclass” November issue.
Pratique des Arts magazine France, December issue.
Duncan Campbell exhibition brochure: Introduction by Andrew Lambirth, art critic of The Spectator.
Jackdaw Magazine page 36: News 'That Beckam Tattoo'
'Closely Observed' Landscape - East Anglia and Beyond: Introduction by Andrew Wilton published by Piers Feetham Gallery, London.
Lynn Painter Stainers catalogue page 11 ‘Holme Valley, Yorkshire’.
‘Around and About: Introduction by David Lee editor of ‘Jackdaw’ published Chappel Galleries, Essex.
‘ just as it is ’ Introduction by Mark Curteis, Curator Chelmsford Museum, published by Chappel Galleries, Essex.


I first encountered Mirecki’s work through a professional happenstance – as the newly appointed Curator of Social History and Art at Chelmsford Museum I was exploring the art in the collections and I was struck by two watercolours - Dooley’s Field and The Parapet, Chappel Viaduct 1998 both by Władysław Mirecki. My attention was drawn by the subject matter as, although I work in Chelmsford, I live on the Essex/Suffolk border and the viaduct is a prominent local landmark. I was then struck by the feel of the work, attention to detail and his honest representation of his subject matter. Władysław (or Waj to those who know him) really captures the essence and sense of place in his work - both things that I think are essential in landscape painting.

In 2013 the museum put on a major temporary exhibition of Mirecki’s work, titled Light and Dark, it juxtaposed Mirecki’s work showing light and life with more dark and gothic themes by Paul Rumsey. The exhibition enabled me to get to know Waj, see more of his work, and get an insight into the meaning and thought processes that produced the work.

It is clear that the East Anglian landscape greatly inspires him and it is present in his new exhibition in all its forms, beaches at sunset with the setting sun reflected on the foreshore (‘Lone Walker, Sunset’), desolate estuaries, woodland glades, lakes and verdant fields.

He works exclusively in water colour with a detailed technique. Self-taught, Waj makes his own rules, which is perhaps why there is so much vitality and honesty in his work. He enjoys the uneasy alliance between the natural and the man-made: a tarmac road junction turned into a beautiful composition with the sun dappled grey on tarmac in the foreground against the lush blues, greens and purples behind (‘Loveneys’). Only Waj would put in the patched tarmac: perfectly capturing present day reality for future generations as it is, because its there, but still making it beautiful. There is often obvious humour, for example, a gas holder to counterpoint the picture postcard perfection of Lavenham (‘Gas Holder, Lavenham’) or a well executed stairwell and landing representing the historic timber framed Little Hall (‘Stairwell, Little Hall Museum, Lavenham’). Indeed, the insistence of the banal and the modern as unavoidable intruders into our appreciation of nature is a hallmark of his work.

Waj deliberately uses bold elements in some of his paintings which sometimes appear not to conform to conventional principles of composition. The result initially feels uneasy to the viewer. Then you stop and look. For example, he will put a barbed wire fence in ‘Fishing Lake’ while in ‘Hogweed and willow herb’, the hogweed stands alone, forlorn, before the lush vegetation and colour of the willow herb. The hogweed initially looks out of place, not allowing the work to have that ‘picture perfect’ sense. He obviously wants to draw the viewer in by arresting their attention to what at first glance is a beautifully rendered image that somehow doesn’t seem quite right – then as the viewer stops he is drawn in to the detail, the composition, the subject matter – which reveals itself almost layer by layer. It is almost impossible to walk past one of his paintings – the viewer is compelled to stop and see what he has done and only then will the picture begin to reveal its secrets and make sense until finally, on the hogweed, you observe the small hover fly on the flower.

In water colours like ‘Link Span, Harwich Pier’ and ‘Walberswick Pier and moon’ one appreciates the subtlety of Mirecki's work; and one can almost smell and feel the sea through gently breaking waves or gentle rivulets of water on the mud flats at low tide. The seascapes, estuarine mud flats and grasses take on the warm light hues of a summer sunset or moonlit night. Mirecki captures their atmospheres beautifully, imbuing such works with a sense of peace, and inviting reflection.

Waj’s use of light is masterful. From a bright spring morning, to dusk on an estuary, you can feel the day he has painted – you know exactly the temperature, the feel of the wind, the colour of the sky. You don’t just look at his paintings – you experience them.

There are several views capturing the beauty and tranquility of Chalkney Woods, particularly known for its wood anemones, local to the Mireckis and (along with the viaduct) a common theme for inspiration in his work.  In ‘Skirting the Puddle’ we see Edna (Waj’s wife and co-proprietor of the Chappel Galleries) on a bleak winter’s afternoon walking down a muddy woodland track. Here one can almost imagine being there, the smell of mud and damp decaying leaves….thinking of being home by a warm fire. The reflections in the puddle show the artist’s skill of accurate portrayal, the reflections of trees and sky perfectly rendered on the mirror surface.

Of course, no exhibition would be complete without Mirecki's beloved viaduct rising from the earth; a masterly feat of engineering and design. Surrounded by trees, lush foliage and grasses the painting eloquently expresses nature's relationship with the manmade. When it works, as it does here, it really works.

This exhibition represents the sort of quality painting one might expect from Waj. More importantly it captures and celebrates our superb English (East Anglian) countryside. Enjoy!

Dr Mark Curteis
Curator of Social History and Art, Chelmsford Museum

January 2014




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