One of the most prominent artists (sculptors) in Croatian history is definitely Ivan Meštrović. Remember this name because from his birthplace Vrpolje in eastern Croatia to Zagreb and Split you will see his artwork. Besides Croatia, his homeland, sculptures, statues and monuments made or designed by this brilliant mind and his magical hands can be found in many countries from east to west – from Serbia to USA. How to recognize Meštrović’s work? Follow me.
Let's start with this beautiful video presenting majority of Ivan Meštrović's work.
Smart and educated artist. Lived in XIX and XX century but created timeless artwork for centuries to come. Strong personality and educated in few countries – Croatia, France, USA, Italy and Austria. Ivan Meštrović, definitely was and is the artist that is present. Many city squares, parks, museums and galleries have his stone or marble creations. Let’s start with one that is maybe the most famous - Statue of bishop Gregory of Nin in Split, Croatia from 1929.
Speaking of Split – in this city you should visit Meštrović Gallery in Split. Other Meštrović related cultural institutions are Meštrović Atelier in Zagreb, Meštrović’s Crikvine-Kaštilac in Split, The Church of the Most Holy Redeemer, as his resting place in Otavice, near Šibenik.
Some of the most famous works are History of Croats in Zagreb
Victor in Belgrade on Kalemegdan fortress
The Spearman in Chicago, IL, USA
Josip Juraj Strossmayer in Zagreb
Meštrović also wrote essays, memoirs, painted. One brilliant mind who left so much to us to preserve and take care of. He lived in turbulent years for Croatia and Yugoslavia. He survived both, First and Second World War. As an artist he did have problems and experienced prosecutions. He moved to Italy and USA where he was accepted as a professor and where he died.
Remember, while travelling we usually take photos of sculptures or buildings and knowing nothing about its background, about its artist and his life. While travelling through Croatia or any other country where Meštrović art is exposed remember these few words about him and appreciate it more.
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