She comes from Krakow but has lived in New York since 1987. She
took up photography as a student. The studies at the Faculty of Architecture
at the Krakow University of Technology introduced her
into the world of art.
Her adventure with photography began with friendship with Janina
Garycka, the co-founder of the Piwnica pod Baranami artistic
cabaret. Zosia Żelewska-Bobrowski photographed Mrs Garycka’s
lovely set designs for performances and other events such as the
famous social and traditional occasions – Jajeczka (Easter Eggs) or
Opłatki (Christmas Eve Wafers). It was at the Piwnica premises that
she had her first exhibitions.
She studied photography at the New York Institute of Photography,
Fashion Institute of Technology and Queens College. She participated
in photographic workshops featuring such artists as Lucille
Khornak, Jack Reznicki, Francesco Scavullo, Nancy Brown, Ira Lerner
and Bob Sacha.
She is a member of the Foreign Press Association and a cofounder
of the Polish-American Photographic Club in New York
(1988) and currently its honorary member. Mrs Żelewska-Bobrowski
is a well-known press and portraits photographer; she has been a
regular contributor to “Nowy Dziennik”/ “Polish Daily News” and
Kurier Plus since 1988. Her photographs appeared in many publications
including Polish magazines (“Pani”, “Twój Styl”, “Viva”, “Rezydencje”,
“Gentleman”, “Show”, “Kino”), American (“New York Times”,
“Playboy”, “World Literature Today”), German (“Der Spiegel”), and
Spanish ones (“Sabado”). Her photographs also appeared in many
books, catalogues, posters and CD covers of famous Polish singers
including Irena Jarocka, Danuta Rinn, Jerzy Połomski, Andrzej Zieliński.
She is a winner of the 1989 News & Journalism Photo Contest organized
by the New York Institute of Photography, and participated
in over 30 exhibitions in Poland and in the USA.
She has worked for the Polish-American institutions including the
Polish & Slavic Center and the Kościuszko Foundation and is wellknown
for her photographic documentation of the cultural and
political life of the Polish community in the USA. One of her photos
appeared in the promotional brochures of the then Mayor of NYC,
In 2001 she received a medal for her cooperation with “Polish Daily
News” during the exhibition celebrating its 30 years of existence.
In September 2008 the artist received a honorary prize “Zasłużony
dla Kultury Polskiej” (Merited for the Polish Culture) awarded
by the Minister of Culture and National Heritage of the Polish Republic
on occasion of the 10th anniversary of the Photographic
In October 2008 she was awarded a honorary prize commemorating
the celebrations of the Month of the Polish Heritage by the
President of the Queens Borough, Mrs Helen Marshall, for documenting
the life of the Polish community.
Photography – for me – is the document of the given moment. I love
portraits and press photos. In my portraits I am trying to capture
beauty and character of man. When I work with camera, I never
plan anything beforehand, because one never knows how the model
will behave. Above all I am trying to gain their trust. In my press
photos I try to seize the right moment, make quick decisions in the
changing conditions, while searching for the adequate angle.
New York, July 2010
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