In “Citynauts” (Miastonauci) - a picture book dedicated to children - artist Tytus Brzozowski creates unusual
urban worlds. He comments on both the residential suburbs as well as the downtown area. Working skillfully
in watercolor he captures a unique portrait of the atmosphere of the city and the people living in it. Buildings
flying over green islands, balloons carrying enormous capes over the city, or red trams departing out of historic
tenement houses - these are just some of the things we'll find in his stories.
In your paintings you consistently explore urban themes, showing the city as a unique and enchanted
How did the illustrations for the book come into being?
In the paintings I made for this book, I assumed there should be more happening than usual. I wanted to have a lot of characters, lots of events that you have to look closely to see, and plenty of different topics. The motto we agreed with the publisher was, "This isn’t everyday life." - The book was to be surprising and curious. Each page shows something unusual - buildings flying on green islands against the background of lush cumulus clouds, balloons carrying huge teapots over the city, townhouses floating on long, slender legs. On each pages the stories of different characters are interwoven for readers to follow. Between the heroes there is interaction - their paths cross - and thanks to the accumulation of different characters, the book can be viewed many times in a multitude of ways. This is a story about the quest to find the main characters here. On each page I also hid various small treasures that need to befound and accurately counted - these are mathematical puzzles.
You tell the story about the city and its inhabitants. What is their relationship?
It seems that in "Miastonauci" the main role belongs both to the heroes and to the city itself, which in its own
What do the main characters in the book do?
In the story the two main characters are on a quest. My first thought was based on the idea of wanting to tell someone something important, but that person does not see you. This may happen at the subway station or at a busy intersection. In the "Miastonauci", main character, along with his penguin companion, try to find a mysterious girl. They wander through fantastic lands, talking with people they bump into along the way. These people represent the ordinary life of the city. In the world of "Miastonauci" everyday issues become mini-adventures. Someone has to deliver an important message, someone helps out, another hero dreams of flying. The book is a story of cooperation, mutual help, community building and urban relations.
You are inspired by Warsaw, which you devote much attention to in your work. However, the town of "Miastonauci" is special, because, like a jigsaw puzzle, it contains architecture from other cities.
My main theme is Warsaw, and in my art work I comment on its history, looking for the character and locality of this interesting butconfused place. In the book I used the architectural symbols of many Polish cities, wanting to build a more universal world. It seems like it would be very nice to find the same interesting building in your favorite book as you saw on a walk with your parents. In most cases, I use recognizable landmarks like St. Mary's Basilica in Gdansk, Wawel Cathedral or the Royal Castle in Warsaw. The book contains buildings representing eight Polish cities. It seems to me that this approach helps build good relationships, it is not negative, and in addition it carries a didactic theme. On the website "Miastonauci" you will be able to find additional information about all the significant buildings appearing in the book.
What made you decide to incorporate these elements into the city's structure?
I was referring to important and recognizable buildings that are clearly associated with a particular city. Most of them are symbols that have existed for hundreds of years. Wrocław is represented by the steep tower of the Church of St Elizabeth standing on the market square, Poznań - Ostrów Tumski cathedral, one of the oldest Polish churches connected with the beginnings of our statehood. There are many buildings in Warsaw that are closes to me and I know best. Both of the book’s covers are decorated with fragments of the PoniatowskiBridge, which is very distinctive, although the symbolism is less obvious. On the last page of the book there are two characteristic objects of the past. After crossing the non-existent Warsaw Porsche viaduct, the AM36 high-speed locomotive passes by the Paris Motor Show in 1937. visit: http://www.miastonauci.pl/en/www.miastonauci.pl/en/ fine art prints