A tale on a wall – the famous mural in Śródka, Poznań

By Wiktoria Witczak, KONTAKT, Poland.
There’s no better time to wander around Poznań in Greater Poland than the beginning of spring. Warm rays of sunshine encourage tourists and residents alike to enjoy their time outside by taking a walk. In that case, a stroll down the Śródka district is highly recommendable. It has gained even more popularity thanks to a distinctive mural on the wall of one of the old tenements buildings. 
The mural was created in 2015 in a “3D” technique and its title can be translated directly as “Śródka’s Tale with a Trumpeter on the roof and a Cat in the Background”. It was a part of the initiative aiming to promote Poznań. The idea came from Gerard Cofta, the chairman of the city council, an unofficial mayor of Śródka. He found the inspiration in a photograph taken in the 1920s and asked an artist, prof. Radosław Barek to help him to bring his vision to life. With the support of the Puenta Foundation and a private investor, they succeeded in enlivening a dull wall at the corner of Śródka and Rynek Śródecki streets. 
Not only does the mural have decorative purposes, but it also honors the history and lives of people who used to be a vital part of the district’s community. Śródka actually used to be an independent town in the 15th century. It was integrated into Poznań in 1800. Now the art piece on the wall is a memory of its former glory with its craftsmen and merchants, who are missing today. 
The artwork depicts a few colorful houses. The small green one actually once stood in that place. A butcher is standing in its doorway – it’s an ode to the district’s old architecture and history. And a bugler sitting on the red roof of an orange house is supposed to be a reminder of a now nonexistent town hall. Since that time the bugler has been wandering around Śródka, looking for a place to call his own… On the wall of the same house, there is also a proud rider on a horse holding a shield with a white eagle on it. That man’s name is Władysław Odonic. He was the Prince of Greater Poland who granted Śródka a town charter in 1231.
And last but not least, we can see a silhouette of the aforementioned cat sneaking around high up on the roof. It’s an important symbol for Śródka. Curious ones may be surprised by an image of a Terravita chocolate shop. It’s just a very clever way of marketing, proving that advertisements don’t have to be ugly and garish.
The square in front of the mural is a popular meeting spot, where residents can socialize. Admittedly the car traffic in the area could be reduced and there’s still a need for more greenery and better lighting, but the painting has certainly made spending time there a lot more pleasant.