Twelve years ago, Wanessa Bąkowska was given up for adoption when she was just days old.
Wanessa was born with Down syndrome and a host of other health problems, and her biological parents felt ill-prepared to care for her. Thankfully, the perfect parents for Wanessa were out there!
Karolina and Rafał Bąkowska of Lipka, Poland, brought Wanessa home when she was just 22 months old. Little did they know they had a future artist on their hands. She would one day receive accolades from none other than the queen of England!
Wanessa is now 12 years old and a talented painter. The Labirynt Gallery in Pila has already hosted an exhibition of her work. Last year, one of her paintings was even displayed at the Great Gala of Integration at the National Theatre in Warsaw.
The 12-year-old creates her beautiful abstract work under the guidance of her teacher.
It was Mrs. Anetka who first suggested that Wanessa send one of her paintings to Queen Elizabeth II. So the young artist selected a splashy oil on canvas work called “Earth” and sent it to Her Majesty, penning a sweet letter to go along with it.
“Your Majesty, my name is Wanessa and I am 12 years old. I live in Poland, in the small commune of Lipka,” she wrote.
I have great teachers and a lot of friends. My family consists of mum Karolina, dad Rafał, brother Alan, and sister Nutka. I love [them] very much. I am disabled and Down syndrome. Nevertheless, I paint pictures. I would like to give you one of them, Your Majesty. The title of this painting is ‘Earth.’ Greetings from Poland.
The story could have ended right there. The queen is busy, after all. Would she even notice a work of art sent to her by a child in Poland?
It turns out the answer is yes! Wanessa was bursting with excitement when she received a return letter on the official Balmoral Castle letterhead. While it wasn’t written by the queen herself, it was penned by her lady-in-waiting, Lady Elizabeth Leeming.
Leeming told Wanessa how much the queen had enjoyed her painting and learning more about the Wanessa’s life in Poland. Leeming even said the queen was “touched” by the “splendid” gift!
What a thrill for this talented child! Her artwork really is extraordinary, and we’re so glad that one of the most powerful people in the world took the time to acknowledge her in such a memorable way. She’ll cherish that letter forever!
Don’t forget to share this story to make someone smile.
Want to be happier in just 5 minutes a day? Sign up for Morning Smile and join over 455,000+ people who start each day with good news.