Naszarkowski does Alfred Nobel

In 2011, both Poland and Sweden commemorated the fact that a century ago Marie Curie had won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, "in recognition of her services to the advancement of chemistry by the discovery of the elements radium and polodium, by the isolation of radium and the study of the nature and compounds of this remarkable element".

The joint issue consisted of a miniature sheet which included two stamps. One portrayed Marie Curie at work, which formed a part of the overall image, and the second stamp depicts the Nobel Prize medal with its portrait of Alfred Nobel and a blue blob which I presume to be radium? The combination of a Pole winning a Swede's Prize made the choice of engraver rather obvious; and so the postal authorities went for a Pole living and working in Sweden: Piotr Naszarkowski.

Accompanying the Polish issue was a lovely black print of (mainly) the engraved parts only. As always a fantastic way to enjoy the engravings, and also a way to wonder once again why the postal authorities don't seem to be able to understand that an engraving doesn't need any other printing processes and that these normally only detract from the art.

Now this wasn't the first time that Naszarkowski tackled the theme of Alfred Nobel. In 2001, the centenary of the Nobel Prize was celebrated with many stamp issues. Sweden's issue was engraved by Czeslaw Slania, but Piotr Naszarkowski engraved a beautiful, large portrait of the man, which was printed in a limited edition of 300. I have no idea whether this was a commissioned work or whether it was just a private work, but whatever the reason behind it, it's an absolutely wonderful portrait.



  1. Hi Adrian, the work of Naszarkowski & Slania are quite amazing, and, I believe they were quite good friends.
    I am working on a collective display of Slania's work for a presentation 2018/2018.
    Some of his private or 'commissioned' work is quite amazing including the set of 23 portraits of world heavy weight boxing champions.
    The connection between the two men is that after Slania retired or passed away, Naszarkowski engraved the "24th" label, to complete the set, of Slania himself, as he also was an amateur boxer.
    I think you, like myself are a 'lover' of the engraving medium.
    I find many of the postage stamps from the past have much more detail and gravitas along with artist merit than the stuff churned out on mass which to all intense and purpose are ONLY photographs with perforations.

    I recently completed a 96 (A3 sheets) display on the work of Karl Bickel the Swiss stamp designer and engraver.

    Sometime in the future I plan to do something similar on each of Slania, Naszarkowski, Morck .
    To my mind stamp engravers often get very little recognition for their work, just look at the GV & GVI Great Britain Empire stamps, very few if any of the engravers have been recorded, such a shame.

  2. Wow, 96 sheets on Bickel! That's quite a lot! I think I barely have half, but then I only focus on his engraving work, not his non-recess designs.
    Yes, I agree completely with all you say, which is the main reason for me having started this blog. To highlight the work of these fantastic artists.
    There's soon more to follow on Naszarkowski!


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