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Lowickie Granie - Lowicz Region Melodies - Folk Music
Lowickie Granie - Lowicz Region Melodies

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The southwest part of Mazovia is known as the Lowicz Region.  This area is inhabited by people called Kziezacy.  What distinguishes them from their neighbors is a specific dialect, customs and traditions, costumes, crafts, architecture and the interior design of their houses.  Lowicz Region folk art flourished in the 19th century and the first half of the 20th century. Weaving, embroidery and decorative color paper cut-outs are typical and very well known areas of Lowicz folk crafts.
Their cloth, hand woven on looms from linen and later from wool, had been first plain, one color only. In the first half of the 19th century there began to be produced first double color linen-woolen cloth and eventually the famous striped fabric appeared which was used to make both men's and women's clothes.  Gradually Lowicz costumes became richly decorated in particular with beautiful embroidery.  In the embroidery multicolor floral patterns have always been the prevailing motifs but geometrical patterns are also to be found.   They were made from beads and thread.  Besides shirts also bodices, aprons and women's and girl's skirts were decorated with them.  After WWII the Lowicz costume in the past worn commonly, became a special occasion garment as well as a representational one for artistic and religious festivals.  Interior design of country cottages was complemented with paper decorations made by women and girls.  Among these were colorful bouquets of flower, cut-outs and so called "spiders" hanging from the ceiling and resembling chandeliers.  Decorative paper cut-outs deserve special attention due to their artistic quality.  
They are usually made from colorful glossy paper with the sort of scissors which in the past were used for shearing sheep.  Individual paper elements such as flowers, leaves, buds, trees, birds, animals, schematic figures of dolls and people are composed of various colors.  On color is placed upon another creating bigger forms which are glued to a white cardboard sheet.  Colors are chosen by contrast and with great artistic taste which results in harmonious images.  These are unique pictures created from paper instead of paints.  In cottages they were put on walls, between pictures of saints and on ceiling beams.  In a traditional village community art had a very practical value.  Entertainment followed hard work and constituted its completion.  Works of art were created by village people for their own everyday needs and aesthetic feeling; they served their customs, rituals and beliefs.  Among the most spectacular festivals were annual rituals and wedding celebrations.  A traditional wedding consisted of several stages following each other.  It was a kind of performance with particular roles assigned to individual participants like to actors in theater who in suitable moments would dance, sing, make orations connected with the ritual.  
Music and singing has always been unique in the Lowicz region as compared to other areas of Poland. The oldest folk band consisted of two instruments: violin and drum.  In the 19th century there were three instruments: violin, clarinet and drum. In the 1950's the accordion came to be used.  All these instruments played the same tune with the violin playing one octave higher.  This CD presents a fragment of musical tradition of the region and is dedicated to those musicians from Lowicz who have passed away.

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  • Compact Disc
  • 27 Selections Performed by 10 Folk Ensembles
  • Recorded in Lowicz in 2000

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