Doing her artistic work, Monika Szpener presents us extremely diverse range of her ideas. She transforms and tidies up the disarranged matter in a strictly intentional way for a precisely defined purpose. However, she can also abandon contemporary viewers and, without any problems, travel in time to use the language of an artist who lived in the past century. She did excellent reconstruction work on classical gravestones of the Naumann family and August Ahrens whose restoration had already been attempted. Illegible iconographic sources could hardly affect artists imagination. Her own, detailed analysis of the gravestones and the material they are made of as well as the sense of proportions based on ancient principles are an evidence of her excellent skills and techniques. A worn-out figure of an angel and a mourning putto are the examples of very good reconstruction work on both historical monuments of grave art that survived in Szczecin necropolis. Similarly, the artist reconstructed busts of the spouses - Johanna and Hermann Haken - in an excellent way, only on the basis of iconographic materials. Their funerary stele had been decorated with these busts some time ago. Well reconstructed portrait features of the dead make it easy to identify the figures in the alcove of the gravestone located in the lapidarium. At present, the gravestone is an essential element of a historical route which was created to show the monuments of the central cemetery. Recently, she has come back to the past again and reconstructed the figure of Jesus Christ made on the basis of B. Thorwaldsen's work for the gravestone of von Dewitz family and for the gravestone of Biesel family with an image of Mother Earth, made by Ernst Barlach. These pieces of work also confirm great skills of the artist who knows how to enter into a creative dialogue and to perfectly reconstruct even such works which were made according to artistic conventions of the past epoch.

Małgorzata Gwiazdowska
Municipal Heritage Conservator in Szczecin