Joseph Stanislaus Ostoja-Kotkowski

Meanjin, Volume XXII, Number 1, 1963

Joseph Stanislaus Ostoja-Kotkowski was born in Golub, Poland on 28 December 1922. From 1940-1945 he studied drawing under Olgierd Vetesco in Przasnysz. After winning a scholarship, he completed his studies at the Academy of Fine Arts in Düsseldorf Germany in 1949.

In 1950 he migrated to Australia, starting in Melbourne where he worked as a labourer. He enrolled at the Victorian School of Fine Arts National Gallery School under Alan Sumner and William Dargie 1950-1955 and brought with him the abstract expression of Europe.

He is best known for his ground-breaking work in chromasonics, laser kinetics and 'sound and image' productions. He earned recognition in Australia and overseas for his revolutionary work in laser sound and image technology. His work included laser art, computer graphics, painting, photography, film-making, theatre design, kinetic and static sculptures and other mediums. Ostoja flourished between 1940 and 1994.

He moved to Stirling, in the Adelaide Hills, South Australia, living under the patronage of the Booth family for over 40 years.

Kotkowski's  first solo exhibition was in South Australia at the Royal Society of Arts, Adelaide.

He co-produced several experimental films, one with Clem Christesen, The Albatross

The Rare Books Collection holds 15 volumes of artist's albums compiled by Kotkowski between 1956 and 1992 They include mainly photographs and press cuttings and document his career in stage design, murals, sculpture and holograms.

Read more about the Kotkowski albums

Black and tan abstract image by Kotkowski Red and grey abstract image by Kotkowski Brown and green abstract image by Kotkowski Blue and grey abstract image by Kotkowski

Volume XII, Numbers 1-4, 1953

Volume XXV, Numbers 1-4, 1966

Back to Cover Art