Adam Bujak is a photographer. He was born on 12th May, 1942, in Kraków, where he still lives and works.
Photographer. Born on 12th May, 1942, in Kraków.
Bujak has been a member of the Association of Polish Photographic Artists since 1967, and the Royal Photographic Society in London since 1970. He also belongs to the International Federation of Photographic Art in Switzerland.
He became famous mainly due to his photos of Karol Wojtyła, which he started taking in 1963; after Wojtyła was elected Pope he photographed him as John Paul II during a number of pilgrimages. He is the author of over a hundred photo albums, posters and calendars. Since 1996, Bujak has been continuously working with the Kraków-based Biały Kruk publishing house, which publishes his works. The photographer has won many awards: he is laureate of the Order of St. Mary Magdalene and the Order of St. Zygmunt, and he received the award of the Foundation Work of the New Millennium Totus 2003, bestowed on the 25th anniversary of John Paul II’s pontificate. He won the Kraków Book of the Month award for the album Skarby klasztorów / Monastery Treasures in January 2003. His albums have been repeatedly honoured with the title of most beautiful book of the year.
Adam Bujak is also the author of albums dedicated to Polish architecture and history, including: Nekropolie królów i książąt polskich / Necropoleis of Polish Kings and Princes, Świątynie. Rzecz o drewnianych budowlach sakralnych różnych wyznań w Polsce / Temples. Wooden Buildings of Worship of Various Denominations in Poland, Katedra płocka / Płock Cathedral, Katedra włocławska / Wrocław Cathedral, Ogrody papieskie / Papal Gardens, Misteria / Mysteries, Polskie krajobrazy / Polish Landscapes, Ruś - tysiąc lat chrześcijaństwa / Rus – Thousand Years of Christianity, Zamki i zamczyska / Castles and Burgstalls, Ziemia Jezusa / The Land of Jesus, Łaska pielgrzymowania / The Grace of Pilgrimage, Watykański Pałac Apostolski / The Apostoilc Palace, Serce Litwy Wilno / Vilnius the Heart of Lithuania, Bazylika Mariacka / St. Mary’s Basilica, Europa krzyżem bogata: od Golgoty do Strasburga / Europe Rich With the Cross: from Golgotha to Strasbourg, Prawy i sprawiedliwy. Życie i męczeństwo błogosławionego księdza Jerzego Popiełuszki / Righteous and Just: the Life and Martyrdom of the Blessed Father Jerzy Popieluszko, Auschwitz-Birkenau.
The photographs published in these albums are patriotic in character and made to evoke an emotional reaction. Adam Bujak’s pictures are not devoid of pathos. He presents religious events in a way which emphasises their importance. In order to facilitate understanding of the content, he usually offers a universal message by showing typical reactions, poses or behaviour. In his photographs depicting landscapes and monuments he stays true to the concept of ‘homeland photography’ (‘forografia ojczysta’) defined by Jan Bułhak in the 1930s. The choice of topic, as well as the lighting and framing of the images, determine their picturesque nature. Their main aim is to promote patriotic values by showing the aesthetic qualities of the country’s cultural and natural heritage.
Adam Bujak’s photographs have been shown at the National Museum in Wrocław, the Museum of Art in Łódź, the Museum of Ethnography and Folklore in Tel Aviv, the George Eastman House in Rochester, New York, and many other museums and galleries. A permanent exhibition of his works is located in the Holy Father John Paul II Family Home in Wadowice and the Archdiocese Museum in Kraków. Bujak has also worked with the media, especially with Tygodnik Powszechny and Kraków Television.
He has been a member of the Archconfraternity of Our Lady of Sorrows in Kraków since 1965 and the Social Committee for the Restoration of Kraków’s Historic Monuments (SKOZK) since 2009. During the 2005 presidential elections, he was in the Honorary Committee supporting Lech Kaczyński.
Author: Magdalena Wróblewska, April 2011, transl. Bozhana Nikolova, May 2015