Żarnower [Żarnowerówna], Teresa (1895–1950) By Głuchowska, Lidia
Teresa Żarnower was a Polish painter, graphic artist, sculptor, and stage/architectural designer. One of the most prominent representatives of Polish Constructivism, Żarnower was also linked to the Yiddish avant-garde and belonged to the pioneers of functional typography and photomontage. As co-founder and the main representative of the Polish group Blok, she edited the group’s magazine Blok (1924–1926). Together with her closest collaborator, Mieczysław Szczuka, she made this publication a forum of International Constructivism, promoting machine aesthetics and a utilitarian approach to art.
Beginning in 1915, Żarnower studied sculpture at the School of Fine Arts in Warsaw; in 1919 she was awarded the prize for the best student of the year. She also received a prize by the Ministry of Art and Culture for her diploma work, Masculine Nude (1920). Żarnower held her first exhibition in the Spring Salon of the Society for Fine Arts Promotion in 1921, and co-organized the Exhibition of New Art in Vilnius in 1923, as well as Blok group shows in Warsaw in 1924–1925. She exhibited her works in the Berlin gallery Der Sturm (1923), at the International Exhibition of Modern Art in Bucharest (1926), at the first International Modern Architecture Exhibition in Warsaw (1926), and at the Modern Architecture Exhibition in Moscow (1927).