Izrael Poznanski Palace in Lodz
The system of the monumental edifices located in ul. Ogrodowa is one of the most spectacular examples of the power of the Lodz industry of the ‘steam-engine’ era. A line of huge buildings opens up with the Poznanski residence. Its truly palatial aspect, exposed situation, yet also its present day function have granted it its leading position among the other Lodz palaces.
The beginnings of the firm go back to the 1860s, when Kalman Poznanski, a Jewish trader from Kowal in the Kujawy region, settled in Lodz. An exorbitant rise of the cotton giant took place in the times of his son Izrael Kalmanowicz (1834-1900) . It is with his person that we associate the building of the original palace, presumably according to Hilary Majewski’s scheme, at the crossing of Ogrodowa Street and Zachodnia Street. It was still a rather modest-looking two-storeyed building, soon replaced by a large residence. It has been impossible to ascertain the authorship of the architectural conception of this imposing edifice, its grandeur and lavishness overshadowing a majority of the other Lodz residences. The design could be attributed to Adolf Seligson. The newer researches put it down to J. Jung and D. Rosenthal. The works undertaken at the break of the centuries led to the making of an extensive scheme on the ‘L’ letter plan, with a large garden at the back. The southern part of the building, topped with the towering, domed roofs and decorated with allegorical statues – personifications of industry – is particularly impressive. Originally the residence also included a ‘winter garden’, ca 770 m2, on the first floor, covered with a glass roof. The application of this magnificent edifice used to be quite untypical. It had mainly reception and office functions. It also housed counting-offices and stores, but also the apartments for more significant clients of the firm. The chief reception chambers were situated on the first floor. The corner Dining Hall with its superb interior decorations has remained the place of most famous Lodz ball-parties. The palace is the Beat of the City Museum, with its record of the city’s past, but also some personal objects, reminders of A. Rubinstein and A. Tansman, the famous musicians born in Lodz.
Address: 15 Ogrodowa Street