Judith on Kampa

Judita

Our visit to the Kampa Museum in Prague a few weeks ago was prompted by seeing the poster for the temporary exhibition Judith on Kampa which featured works by three artists – the Austrian Gustav Klimt and two Czechs, Alphonse Mucha and František Kupka.

The exhibition seemed to have been initiated by the loan of two paintngs by Klimt – The Water Castle, on loan from the Prague National Gallery, and the star of the show Judith from 1904-1905 from the collection of the Gallery of Fine Arts in Ostrava / Ostrava, exhibited in Prague for the first time in 20 years.

The majority of the works exhibited were mainly drawings by the three artists, loaned  from Czech public and private collections. They included two dozen drawings by Klimt –  portraits, erotic female nudes and studies for paintings.

I guess the rationale for the exhibition is that all three artists spent time in both Vienna and the Czech lands and that there are similarities in their subject matter. It was interesting to compare and contrast.

There wasn’t a guide to the exhibition or anything much about it on the museum’s website.  So I’ve pulled together some examples of the three artists’ drawings similar to those we saw to provide a flavour of the exhibition

Klimt

Reclining Woman, Seen from Behind / Klimt

(source here)

Study for The Virgin / Klimt

(Source here)

Mucha

Iris - Alphonse Mucha

(Source here)

Daughter - Alphonse Mucha

(Source here)

Contemplation - Alphonse Mucha

(Source here)

Kupka

Study for

(Source here)

Women in the tavern - Frantisek Kupka

(Source here)

All three were accomplished draughtsmen. Klimt, in particular, had an economy of style and was able to create a recognisable figure with a few lines – the mark of a great artist – both Picasso and Matisse were able to do this.

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