She was born on May 21, 1926 in Bielsk Podlaski, to Julia and Alojzy Maliszewski. Her parents ran a shop. His father, who was awarded the Cross of Valour, was a legionnaire, and the commander of the Social and Educational Organization "Strzelec". He was arrested in 1939, at the beginning of the war, and held in a prison in Białystok. After his release, he became involved in the activities of the Home Army, for which he was later shot by the Germans.
On 13 April 1940, Alina Maliszewska, at the age of 13, with her mother and older half-brother Stefan was deported deep into the USSR. She was forced to work on the construction of bridges on the Akmolinsk-Kartaly route. When ‘amnesty’ was declared, her brother left the USSR with General Anders' army, while Alina and her mother remained in exile, returning to Poland at the end of 1945.
They settled in Bielsk Podlaski, where Alina attended school and was active in scouting. After graduating from high school, she enrolled at the Academy of Fine Arts in Krakow. She then moved to Falenica and graduated from art studies in Warsaw in 1954.
She was involved in graphic arts, painting and artistic ceramics. For 30 years she cooperated with the Studio of Film Miniatures. She has directed 40 animated films, including animated series for children like "The Strange Adventures of Matołek the Billy Goat" as well as short animations. Her films have received numerous awards, eg. "Adventure in Stripes" at the National Short Film Festival in Krakow or "On One Stool" nominated at the festival in Grenoble.
She was awarded the Gloria Artis medal for her contribution to Polish culture. Her prints, illustrating her own experiences of exile and those she heard from other Siberian deportees, can be found at the Józef Piłsudski Institute in New York and at the Museum of Independence in Warsaw. In 2019 they were published by the Sybir Memorial Museum in an album entitled "Siberia in pencil by Alina Maliszewska".
She died on September 12th, 2020.
SOURCE: Transcribed and translated from the audio interview recorded by Katarzyna Boruń-Jagodzińska in 2010 in Warsaw at https://relacjebiograficzne.pl/
Following are some drawings by Alina about the deportation
Copyright: Maliszewska family