A priceless painting donated by Małgorzata Boroń-daughter of Helena Datoń (married name Szpak) can now be seen on the top floor of the Remembrance Museum.
The portrait of Wilhelm Gawliczek was painted in 1944 by another Auschwitz prisoner, Mieczysław Koscielniak, a painter and draughtsman. Wilhelm gave it to Helena Datoń, who, while working in the German canteen located near the camp, helped prisoners by smuggling in secret messages, medicine and food. The inscription on the painting reads, “For your friendship. Wilek.”
In addition to the portrait of Gawliczek, a new display case mounted on the top floor of the museum will soon house (moved from the first floor) a portrait of Elzbieta Dyduch (married name Matjas). Together with the painting depicting Wanda Jurczyk (married name Żak), which is on display in another room, the museum space will house three unusual works of art made by Auschwitz prisoners and donated as tokens of gratitude to those who rendered aid to them during the German occupation.
Read more about the figure of Helena Datoń and her assistance to prisoners: