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Janusz Hereźniak


b. 1935


Janusz Maciej Hereźniak – full professor at the University of Łódź, Poland – geobotanist, dendrologist and artist photographer.
He was born on January 24 1935 in Wancerzów near Częstochowa. In 1956 he began studies at the Faculty of Biology, at the University of Łódź. He received his master’s degree in biology in 1961. During the late years of his studies, he started working at the Department of Plant Systematic and Geography, where he pursued his scientific career, obtaining all the scientific titles (doctor’s in 1969, habilitated doctor’s in 1994 and full professor’s in 2003). Between 2000 and 2005 he was the head of the Department of Geobotany and Plant Ecology. He promoted three doctors and is the author of 165 publications, including 75 original creative works and 13 articles concerning nature and artistic photography.
His passion for photography began after graduation from high school in 1952. He was largely influenced by the book Bloodless hunt by an outstanding filmmaker and photographer of nature – Włodzimierz Puchalski.
His early years in photography were of amateur nature until, in 1958, he joined the Łódź Society of Photographers where he learned the principles of professional photography. In 1965 he became a member of Association of Polish Art Photographers in Warsaw. Ever since that time, he combines artistic nature photography with scientific and didactic activities of university lecturer and environmentalist.
Many of his photographs were published by Polish and foreign publishing houses of articstic and scientific profile. Outside Poland, his works were published in England (“Photography Year Book”), Holland, Germany, France, Switzerland, Italy, Canada and United States among others.
Janusz Hereźniak is the author of three photographic albums and a number of original sets of photographs that illustrate over 20 books.
His works were presented on 32 individual and over 50 collective exibitions in Poland and abroad. His photograms are present at the Museum of Modern Art in Łódź, National Museum in Warsaw, at the Library of the University of Łódź, in New York and in private collections.
As a scientist and nature photographer, he participated in a five moths long expedition to Equatorial Africa (1974-75) from which he brought over seven thousands black and white and color photographs. His archive, completed since 1956, consists of approximately 45 thousand black and white and colour negatives and around 18 thousand photographs of medium and small format.
Apart form medals and diplomas from various photographic exibitions, he has been honoured with over 30 regional, ministerial and other state awards for his activity in environmental protection, science and photography.
The biographic notes on Janusz Hereźniak and his works are included in “Photographers Encyclopedia International 1839 to the present” (1984) and in the subsequent edition on CD Mac/PC Ides et Calanders S.A. Switzerland, as well as in the “Golden Book of Polish Science – The Scientists of United Europe” (2006)