“One day, while hiking in the mountains and looking down I noticed this valley and a thought crossed my mind how nice it would be nice to settle in this place. Enchanted and delighted by this idea I walked in the woods, ran down along a path amidst meadows and in a few hours I arranged the purchase of a country cottage, including adjacent land, green areas, beech wood and natural water springs. I still recall this unconfined joy of my wife and children the moment we could call this corner of the world totally ours and took to renovating an old and falling apart cottage, which following best possible transformation was supposed to become our cosy, family settlement.” - Gerhart Hauptmann
In this way an old country cottage, purchased in 1890, became both the family house and a place of creative work for two outstanding writers and brothers – Carl and Gerhart Hauptmann’.
Gerhart Hauptmann (1862-1946) – “the father of German naturalist drama” awarded, in 1912, with The Nobel Prize in Literature for his overall creative output. It was in Szklarska Poręba that he wrote his most outstanding books: “The Weavers”, “The Beaver Coat”, “Drayman Henschel”, “Hannele”, or “College Crampton”.
The older of two brothers Carl Hauptmann (1858-1921) – a philosopher, biologist, poet, playwright became famous mainly after the publication of “The Mountain Ghost”, a collection of nine adventures experienced by a legendary ruler of The Karkonosze Mountains.
The Hauptmanns’ name was always attracting many outstanding guests originating from cultural and scientific European circles. In time their house became a special place for making social and artistic contacts, for initiating the establishment of an artistic colony in Szklarska Poręba. Formally the colony was constituted after Carl Hauptmann’s death – in 1922 “An Association of St. Lucas Artists” was founded.
Today the House of Carl and Gerhart Hauptmann still plays the role of an inspiring centre for artists. There are organized numerous artistic events arranged by culture animators, it participates and co-organizes open space activities for students, initiated by Wrocław Academy of Fine Arts and town authorities, it was involved in the establishment of an association called “The New Mill. Artistic colony” which brings together artists from The Karkonosze and The Izery Mountains, it cooperates with EUROArt – the federation of artistic colonies joined by Szklarska Poręba in 2005. The Hauptmanns Museum attempts to take over the ideological heritage after last century residents of this very exceptional house.
Permanent exhibitions in the House of Carl and Gerhart Hauptmann
In The Mountain Ghost’s Kingdom
Products manufactured in the glass factory “Józefina” in Szklarska Poręba
Gerhart Hauptmann and his social circles
“Łukaszowcy” - the Lucas people
Carl Hauptmann and his friends
Wlastimil Hofmann and early years of the post-war colony
The artists of glass and photography
The youngest generation of Szklarska Poręba artists