An exceptional historical link between the Netherlands and Poland is formed by the architect Tylman van Gameren (1632-1706), also known as Tilman or Tielman Gamerski. Born in Utrecht, Van Gameren was a student of the Dutch artist and architect Jacob van Campen. He also travelled to Italy. Upon meeting the Polish prince Stanisław Herakliusz Lubomirski in Leiden, Van Gameren moved to Poland, where he grew into a famed architect and prime representative of the Polish classicist Baroque. His style incorporated Dutch, French and Italian influences. From 1664 onwards, Van Gameren was employed by the Lubomirski family, but he also worked for other upper class families. He was court architect to the Polish king Michał Korybut Wiśniowiecki, and also worked for king Jan III Sobieski and his wife, queen Marie Casimire Louise de la Grange d’Arquien. Furthermore, Van Gameren was appointed Golden Spur Knight, granted a nobleman’s status, and married a Polish woman named Anna Komorowska. Van Gameren designed numerous churches and palaces across Poland, including the St. Kazimierz Church and Krasiński Palace in Warsaw, and the Branicki Palace in Białystok. Miraculously, most of Van Gameren’s sketches and plans have been preserved.
This painting shows the New Town Market Square in Warsaw, with the St. Kazimierz Church designed by Van Gameren. The painting was made by Bernardo Bellotto in 1778. It hangs in the Royal Castle in Warsaw:
*I originally wrote this post for the social media outlets of the Dutch Embassy in Poland. This was post no. 20.