Stanisław Chlebowski was a Polish painter with Russian and Turkish connections. He was a renowned specialist in Oriental themes.
Chlebowski was born in the Ushitsky Uyezd of the Podolian Governorate of the Russian Empire (now Vinkivtsi Raion, Ukraine), and learned drawing in Grekov Odessa Art school. Between 1853-1859, he studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in St. Petersburg, and then on a scholarship for six years in Paris as the pupil of the French Orientalist painter Jean-Léon Gérôme. Chlebowski traveled to Spain, Italy, Germany, and Belgium. His first success was selling his painting Joanne d’Arc in Amiens Prison to Napoleon III of France.
In the years 1864-1876 Chlebowski was the master painter under the service of Sultan Abdülaziz and took up residence in Constantinople. Chlebowski became popular in the empire. During his services, he had obtained permission to bring with him a large icon of Mother of God Leading Our Way having been rescued from the Hodegon Monastery in 1453. He had come across it in one of the antique stores in Constantinople, untouched by its Turkish conservator. This account is certified in a letter by the Comité National Polonais à Constantinople, dated June 27, 1938.
In 1876 he moved to Paris. In 1881 he returned permanently to Krakow. The subject matter of his watercolours and oil paintings is diverse. He painted images of historical battles related to the history of Turkey and Ottoman Empire, oriental genre scenes, landscapes, and portraits of Ottoman sultans. He died near Posen, in Rundhausen at age 49.
Chlebowski lived abroad for a long time and as a result his paintings were very rare in Poland. The National Museum in Krakow houses some of his other important Orientalist works such as Entrée de Mahomet II à Stamboul.