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Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Anton Chladek

Like the personages of his paintings, Anton Chladek belongs to the pre-modern period of the Romanian culture. Before Chladek, Romanian fine art lived in the realm of Byzantine tradition. After him our culture entered its modern age. Chladek was the master of Grigorescu.

Czech by nationality, Anton Chladek was born in Vojvodina in 1794. He studied in Budapest and Vienna, where he absorbed the values of the Biedermeier universe. Settling in Bucharest by 1835, he made portraits and miniatures, along with church mural painting. As I said, he was the master of Grigorescu: I would say this was the trail of our cultural universe in those years - leaving Phanar, adopting Biedermeier, embracing Barbizon.

It is a great experience to see his works at the National Gallery in the Museum of Art of Romania: it's the visual revival of an end and a dawn - the end of the long Phanariot epoch, the dawn of Modern Romania.

Anton Chladek passed away in 1882.

(Old Masters)



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