National Museum exhibits folklore-inspired paintings

THE SLOVAK National Museum (SNM) likes to combine historical research with artistic depiction. This summer the museum has organised the exhibition Ľudový odev na palete / Folk Costumes on the Palette. It presents Slovak traditional clothing as depicted by Slovak artists, as well as foreign artists connected in some way with Slovakia.

Paintings mix with authentic folk costumes in museum's big hall.Paintings mix with authentic folk costumes in museum's big hall. (Source: Matúš Lányi)

THE SLOVAK National Museum (SNM) likes to combine historical research with artistic depiction. This summer the museum has organised the exhibition Ľudový odev na palete / Folk Costumes on the Palette. It presents Slovak traditional clothing as depicted by Slovak artists, as well as foreign artists connected in some way with Slovakia.

“As an example of the latter, I can mention Czech painter Jan Hála, whose life story is connected with a distinctive village under the Tatras, Važec,” exhibition curator Ľubomír Podušel said. He added that the event is the first of its kind taking this point of view, and featuring painters inspired by both festive and working clothes.

The selection offered at the SNM covers Slovak history from the end of the 19th century to the mid 20th century, and encompasses every geographical region of Slovakia, with their distinctive folk costumes. Artists exhibited include well-known national painters like Miloš Alexander Bazovský, Peter Michal Bohúň, Ľudovít Fulla, Martin Benka, Janko Alexy, Mikuláš Galanda, Imro Weiner-Kráľ, Max Kurth, Jozef T. Mousson and Eugen Nevan, but also Gustáv Mallý, Štefan Bednár, Jozef Hanula, Jaroslav Augusta, Jóža Úprka, Hála, and others. The styles and movements depicted in the paintings and artefacts included span from realism to pre-modernism, and from post-impressionism to modernism, and reflect artistic tendencies in Europe and worldwide, while differing slightly from other nations’ art histories.

“We have a selection of the most valuable [pieces] that can be found in the collections of Slovak institutions,” SNM head Rastislav Púdelka boasted. The exhibition certainly represents a wide selection of works linked via the motif of folklore. It can be viewed at the SNM, Vajanského nábrežie 2, daily (except Mondays) between 10:00 and 18:00 until September 30.

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