Buda Family Archive

collection Buda Family Archive
authors Zygmunt Buda
starring Katarzyna Buda; Marek Buda; Teodora Chmielewska; Jolanta Chmielewska; Helena Gordon; James Gordon; Aleksander Jachniewicz; Krystyna Jachniewicz; Wanda Konopnicka; Bogdan Sobol; Janina Sobol; Franciszek Stafisz; Łucja Stafisz
length 0:03:22
country Poland
year 1963
format 16 mm
color black and white
signature PAFD 0037 047

Zygmunt Buda was born in Poznań in 1924 and was interested in photography since his childhood. From 1941, he worked in the Poznań photographic company Foto-Stewner, founded by Ernest Stewner. After the end of the war, he worked as a photographer in the Ministry of Internal Affairs, from which, in the 50s, he was dismissed for political incorrectness. From the 60s, he worked in the Film Services Department at the corner of Marszałkowska and Krucza streets in Warsaw. Zygmunt recorded films with a business camera with a 16-millimeter tape and a private SANYO camera with an 8-millimeter tape, which he received as a gift from a family living in the USA. His sons, Jacek and Marek, as well as the next generations of the Buda family, also became enthusiasts of filming family life.

The film was made by Zygmunt Buda in the summer of 1963 during the welcome of Aunt Helena and Uncle Dzidek by the rest of the family in Warsaw’s Okęcie. Helena Gordon was the daughter of Michał Grzymała (Franciszek Stafisz’s cousin), who emigrated to the United States before World War I. The film documents Helena’s first visit to Poland. Helena worked for the education system and, in the following years, visited the country more often and cooperated with Polish schools. Her father, Michał, visited Poland in 1960 with a trip on the ship “Batory”. Helena’s husband, Dzidek Jachniewicz (James Gordon), emigrated to the USA after World War II, in which he participated, fighting at Monte Cassino. For practical reasons, when he was already living in the US, the man changed his name to Gordon. Dzidek worked at the General Motors plant in Detroit. Jacek Buda, the son of the author of the film, recalls gifts from his uncle and aunt from the USA for him and his brother Marek – cowboy colts and jeans, then called farmers. 

Shots of a British European Airways aircraft on the tarmac. Passengers get off the plane and enter the airport building. The family awaits the travelers. The children hold bouquets of flowers in their hands. Helena and Dzidek, present among the passengers at the airport in the previous shot, affectionately greet family members and rest on a bench. There are: Wanda Konopnicka (Dzidek’s sister), Mrs. Jachniewicz (Dzidek’s mother), Katarzyna Buda (Zygmunt’s wife), Teodora Chmielewska (Katarzyna’s sister), Krysia Jachniewicz (the daughter of Aleksander Jachniewicz, Dzidek’s brother), Franciszek Stafisz (Katarzyna’s father) with his wife Łucja, Marek (Zygmunt and Katarzyna’s son) and Jola (Teodora and Kazimierz Chmielewski’s daughter), Janina and Bogdan Sobol, Mr. Konopnicki (Wanda’s husband) and Olek (Dzidek’s brother). Helena and Dzidek greet each of the family members in turn. Mosaic of genre scenes in the apartment.



keywords Poland  Warsaw  Okęcie  British European Airways  airport  plane  travel  family  family life  children  flowers  bench 
source of funding Polish Film Institute