One question: why is Polish art not very well represented in the West?
You mean now or in the past?
I think usually rich countries become centres of art. Artists need money too, somebody have to pay them for their pictures - those people or institutions were called patrons, I think. Take Italian painters for example. Their patrons were not only rich noble families but also powerful Vatican (big money, big scale, big prestige, big fame). Michelangelo made the statue of David for the consuls of the Guild of Wool in Florence. He was commissioned to paint the Sistine Chapel ceiling by the Pope Julius II. This famous Pietà was commissioned for the French cardinal Jean de Billheres:
The same is with Leonardo da Vinci, Caravaggio and many others.
Artists are drawn to places where other artists already are, where art is developing and money are paid.
Pablo Picasso was Spanish, not French. He came to Paris and he became famous. Marc Chagall (Мойша Захарович Шагалов) was a Belarusian Jew born in Russia (now Belarus). He got a scholarship and thanks to this could come to Paris. Vincent van Gogh came to France from Netherlands.
El Greco was Greek not Spanish. First he came to Italy, than to Spain and he stayed in Spain where he painted for the Catholic Church which was trying to regain its position in Spain.
I would say that, more or less (at least judging by the most famous names and "schools" of art and my limited knowledge):
The Renaissance was owned by Italy, The Netherlands.
Baroque - Italy, Spain, France a bit too.
Romanticism - Germany
Classicism - France
Art Nouveau - France, Austria, Spain
and generally first half of 20th century - France, Spain in a lesser degree (?)
part of the first half and other half of 20th century - America (Andy Warhol, Jackson Pollock)
As for the UK - I remember Thomas Gainsborough and I know about the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood but I doubt a 5 year old outside the UK could point one of their paintings out ;)
Is it a form of discrimination? I think it might be.
I don't think so... I guess the West is focused on itself to some degree. But Polish artists weren't kicked out of the galleries or museums as far as I know ;)
There are paintings of Olga Boznańska (who moved from Poland to Austria and then to Paris, I think) in Musée d'Orsay:
Some of her paintings:
They're rather sad.
A Russian lady that has been to Paris lately and visited this museum wrote me that she remembered a very sad sculpture by an artist with a Polish name.
It's called "La nostalgie du pauvre":
It was made by Bolesław Biegas:
I've been to Musée d'Orsay years ago so I can't say right now if there are more Polish artists there.