Cute little guy, isn’t he? He’s a “krasnal”- one of a series of about 150 gnomes, some of whom I photographed on my recent trip to Wrocław. He was appropriately situated outside the University Buildings- a work of art if ever I saw one. Now there’s a place to study!
I had read about the gnomes somewhere, and was half determined to ignore them, but I failed miserably. Before I knew it I’d purchased the 6 złoty guide (just over £1) and was off in hot pursuit.
These two got the ball rolling (sorry!), on ul. Świdnicka. This rather bad-tempered looking walker was there too. But then, you’d be grumpy if someone splashed your beard with red paint!
Still on ul. Świdnicka, any guesses what this handsome fellow is doing?
By now I’ve drifted into the Rynek, where I get a warm welcome from this little chap.
Refusing to be distracted by the fountains, I move on to Plac Solny. I was tempted by the deck chairs, but there were more pressing matters.
No luck in Solny- I’ll have to backtrack later, but ul. sw. Elzbiety yielded this little guy, fast asleep, and the firemen with hoses, trying to wake him up?
Found the butcher next, and his little chopper, on ul. Jatki. No worries for the pigs and goat. They were bigger than him.
And now we’re back at the University, where the Swordsman tries to protect himself with an umbrella! Very foolish! He’s been stolen twice.
Taking time off from gnomes, I head for the Botanic Gardens, but I have to shelter in the greenhouses when it rains.
Wouldn’t you know it? I escape the rain and am accosted by gardener gnomes.
Wrocław is a city with lots of water. The River Odra flows though it and there’s also a system of canals. Walking along Podwale is a peaceful option, and there’s a delightful park bordering it. Of course, there are gnomes too.
Checking out the shops, I find a burglar gnome! Turns out he’s an art lover.
And there are useful gnomes too.
But one little chap pulled at my heart strings. He couldn’t even pop in for a cup of coffee.
These fellows have their own website www.krasnale.pl and of course, a Facebook page so you can follow their exploits. Their origins are explained on the site, but basically they are beloved of the Polish people for their association with anti-communism. The first of the gnomes in bronze statuette form was Papa Krasnal, sculpted in 2001. Today he’s happy to pose with my Dad, and niece Kasia, who lives in Wrocław.
I only managed to see about 30 gnomes, so it’s obvious I’ll have to go back. Can you blame me?