Celebrated painter Marijana Grisnik is renowned for her colorful depictions of everyday life in Croatian-American culture. Born in 1936 in Kansas, Marijana grew up in the historic Croatian neighborhood of Strawberry Hill, Kansas City.
All four of Marijana’s grandparents emigrated to Strawberry Hill from Croatia. They taught her many things about her heritage, including how to make povitica, a sweet rolled dough often made with a walnut filling. The artist cites the following poem, by an unknown author, to accompany the painted tribute to Croatian grandmothers.My Croatian grandma had a long thick braid down her back, I would watch as she wound the grey and brown rope around and around at the nape of her neck. She wore black nun-shoes and a flower printed housedress with a handkerchief tucked in her belt. She twisted her stockings into fat little knots behind her knees and she hated underwear. Holidays she kneaded rich egg dough for povi bread. I would watch as she wound the nut and honey filled rope around and around in the baking pan. My Croatian grandma wound her grey and brown braid and her warm nut and honey bread around and around all of us for ever.