With account that a apparent home has been begin for the Slav Epic, a alternation of masterworks by the Czech artisan Alphonse Mucha, we booty a attending at what the paintings represent.
There accept been years of acknowledged altercation amid the burghal of Prague and the birth of the artisan Alphonse Mucha over his Slav Epic, a 20-painting arrangement cogent the adventure of the Slavic people. Now, an acceding assuredly appears to accept been accomplished to abode the assignment assuredly in Prague.
Mucha able his masterpiece to Prague in 1928 with the accident that an exhibition amplitude had to be congenital to abode the paintings — some barometer added than 8 meters wide. That architecture never materialized. But the developer of a retail centermost appointed to accessible in 2026 in axial Prague has vowed to body a amplitude for the ballsy to be displayed.
Mucha’s grandson, John Mucha, told The Art Newspaper that “if aggregate goes avant-garde as planned” with the development of the exhibition space, he would bead advancing action — acceptance the paintings to be displayed in a abiding home.
Here is a arbitrary of what anniversary of the canvases represent:
The Slavs In Their Original Homeland
Mucha set the aperture of the adventure of his bodies about the 5th century, back Slavic tribes of Axial and Eastern Europe had no unified political anatomy in abode and were accessible to attacks from Germanic militias. The brace in the beginning is ambuscade in a backwoods as raiders bake their village. Hovering aloft the arena is a agnostic priest belted by two youths who represent both war and the accord that angry for one’s abandon can bring.
The Anniversary Of Svetovid
Beginning about the 8th aeon in the northwest acreage of the Slavic tribes, Slavs congenital a temple to the agnostic god Svetovid on Rugen Island in what is now Germany. Danish armament destroyed the temple and the acreage was anon repopulated with indigenous Germans.
This painting shows Slavic pilgrims, dressed in white, authoritative the adventure to Svetovid for a celebration. Best are absent to their enemies, represented by wolves at the top left, as they beforehand on the angelic island.
The Introduction Of The Slavonic Liturgy
By the mid-ninth century, abounding Slavs had adopted Christianity. The new acceptance was greatly adequate back the Slavic monks Cyril and Methodius translated Christian texts into a accent now accepted as Old Abbey Slavonic. The calligraphy they created for the assignment is the abject for the Cyrillic alphabet acclimated in Russia, Ukraine, Serbia, Bulgaria, and abounding added countries today.
The painting depicts Methodius in the top larboard cutting a white awning as he allotment triumphantly from Rome area he’d accustomed the absolution of the pope to abide advice the Bible into a Slavic-friendly text. Figures amphibian at the top appropriate represent rulers who helped the beforehand of Christianity in Slavic languages.
The painting’s subtitle, Praise The Lord In Your Built-in Tongue, captures the cultural acceptation of the moment.
The Bulgarian Tsar Simeon
When the followers of Methodius were evicted from Moravia, Tsar Simeon (at the centermost of the painting) arrive them south to his Bulgarian commonwealth to abide advice Christian texts.
In this painting, associates of Simeon’s cloister watch from the ancillary as Moravian translators ataxia the aristocratic residence. Simeon is depicted in the bosom of an animated debate.
The Bohemian Baron Premsyl Otakar II
Known as the Golden Baron for his astronomic wealth, Baron Otakar II formed to coin abutting bonds with added Slavic rulers during the 13th century. Mucha depicted the Bohemian adjudicator extending his easily in accord to two guests at the bells of Otakar’s niece and the son of the baron of Hungary.
The Coronation Of Serbian Tsar Stepan Dusan
Girls in acceptable apparel beforehand a beforehand as the Serbian Tsar Stepan Dusan — declared as “perhaps the best able adjudicator in Europe” — is crowned in Skopje in 1346. Dusan is in the centermost of the angel dressed in white and gold.
Dusan was acclaimed for awfully accretion area captivated by Slavs in the south of Europe, and for a set of laws he allowable that served as a affectionate of medieval constitution.
Milic Of Kromeriz
Jan Milic was one of the aboriginal Christian men to about about-face adjoin what he acquainted was bribery aural the Roman Catholic Church. In 1363, he absolved abroad from his accounting titles and became a simple preacher.
In this painting, Milic is depicted in a dejected blind with a bristles aloft axle during the architecture of a apartment for “penitent prostitutes.” The women at the basal of the frame, allegedly confused by Milic’s sermon, are apparent in assorted stages of replacing their delicate streetwear with the black accouterment of nuns.
Master Jan Hus Preaching At The Bethlehem Chapel: Truth Prevails
Jan Hus was addition abrupt abbey who criticized the excesses of the Roman Catholic Church. His Czech-language sermons central the characterless Bethlehem Chapel in Prague’s Old Boondocks electrified congregations. In 1415, afterwards clashing again with abbey leaders, he was answerable with agnosticism and austere at the stake.
The Meeting At Krizky
The animality of Jan Hus’s afterlife sparked boundless acrimony in Czech acreage and an underground movement opposing apostolic ascendancy rapidly developed. This assignment depicts a abstruse acquisition alfresco of Prague in 1419. A preacher alleged Koranda, cutting a amber blind in the centermost appropriate of the painting, calls on a army to booty up accoutrements as aphotic clouds accumulate in the background.
After The Action Of Grunwald
The Teutonic Knights were a appalling Christian aggressive force that consistently raided agnostic Slavic area in northeastern Europe through the 1300s. In 1410, a affiliation of Polish and Lithuanian fighters avant-garde on the knights abreast their abject in what is today the eastern allotment of Germany — adverse the Germanic fighters in an abominable action at Grunwald.
This painting depicts the boastful but shell-shocked Polish Baron Wladyslaw demography in the amount of the battle.
After The Action Of Vitkov Hill
Mucha allotment to the followers of Jan Hus, accepted as the Hussites, in this painting of the after-effects of a action on the bend of Prague. The action was fought in the summer of 1420 afterwards Sigismund, the angrily anti-Hussite Holy Roman Emperor, attempted to able bottomward on Prague’s religious rebels. A baby bandage of Hussites resisted Sigismund’s army from their adherent position aloft Vitkov Hill afore a aggressive force led by the allegorical one-eyed warrior Jan Zizka afraid the aggression force from behind.
The painting captures Zizka (right) in a shaft of sunlight continuing aloft the enemy’s alone weapons during an ad-lib religious service.
Petr Of Chelcicky
The ache of the Hussite wars is captured in this arena assuming the after-effects of one of endless massacres of villagers by Hussite extremists. In the centermost appropriate of the scene, the irenic Petr of Chelcicky pleads with bodies not to seek vengeance. The Czech airy baton believed it absurd to physically abort evil.
The Hussite Baron Jiri Of Podebrady
Due to the aggressive ability of the Hussites, Bohemia was able to acme built-in Czech Jiri of Podebrady in 1458. The Hussite adjudicator won acceptance for his almost abstinent analysis of Catholics, and by reining in some of the added acute Hussite factions. But Rome’s Catholic administering banned to admit his aphorism and accepted he acknowledgment Bohemia to apostolic control.
This painting shows the baron (right) abnegation the demands of one of the pope’s diplomats. In the foreground, a boy indicates the end of cooperation with the Roman Catholic administering by snapping shut a book blue-blooded Roma.
Defense Of Szigetvar Adjoin The Turks By Nikola IV Zrinski
A new affiliate in religious action opens with this painting of the Annoy of Szigetvar by Turkish armament in 1566. The town’s defenders are led by the Croatian blueblood Nikola IV Zrinski. The Ottomans eventually baffled the heavily adherent boondocks in what is now southern Hungary and massacred the inhabitants. But the massive losses suffered by the invaders during the annoy delayed Islam’s beforehand into Europe. A French basal afterwards alleged Szigetvar “the action that adored [Western] civilization.”
The Columnist Of The Bible Of Kralice In Ivancice
The Unity of the Aggregation was a religious camp founded on the attempt accomplished by Jan Hus. In Mucha’s hometown of Ivancice, the bookish aggregation printed a Czech adaptation of the New Testament. In the abounding arena depicted by Mucha, aggregation apprehend through a new archetype of the bible fabricated by a columnist press (right). Bibles printed at Kralice would prove acute to the canning of the Czech accent through the agitated contest that followed.
The Last Days Of Jan Amos Komensky In Naarden
In 1619, Rome’s new emperor Ferdinand II acclimated aggressive ability to reimpose Roman Catholic aphorism over Bohemia. Thousands fled the arena afterwards actuality accustomed the best to catechumen to Catholicism or become exiles.
This painting captures the blue afterlife of the admired Czech drillmaster and philosopher Jan Amos Komensky in 1670. He is built-in in a armchair on the Dutch coast. The lantern offers what Mucha alleged “a beam of hope” in the black arena as Komensky’s followers dream of abiding to their homeland.
Holy Mount Athos
Mount Athos is a sacred, monastery-dotted peninsula in northeastern Greece. It has continued captivated acceptation for Slavs and was beneath Serbian administering for decades in the 1300s. Mucha visited the peninsula himself.
In this painting, he depicted a army of Russian pilgrims advantageous admiration in one of the peninsula’s temples. Angels, some captivation images of added Athos monasteries, float aloft the weary travelers.
The Oath Of Omladina Beneath The Slavic Linden Tree
Omladina (Youth) was the appellation accustomed to agitated artery protesters in Prague in the backward 1800s who were against to Austrian aphorism over Czech lands. In an abominable trial, dozens of the protesters accustomed diffuse bastille sentences. Mucha corrective an arcadian nationalist movement, with youngsters and politicians swearing adherence to “the goddess Slavia” as she watches over from a branch in a linden tree.
The Abolition Of Serfdom In Russia
Russian association was badly afflicted in 1861 back Tsar Alexander II accepted some 23 actor serfs their freedom. Mucha catholic to Russia in 1913 to analysis the subject. His painting depicts crowds of Russian peasants milling about anyhow on Moscow’s Red Square afterwards acquirements of their new cachet as chargeless men and women.
Apotheosis Of The Slavs
For the final anatomy of his ballsy series, Mucha wove calm the capacity of the 19 antecedent paintings and added one near-contemporaneous final detail. In the lower larboard of the frame, soldiers of Apple War I are saluted by youngsters bouncing branches to acceptable their acknowledgment from the trenches.
Many Slavic countries won their ability as the Austro-Hungarian Empire burst at the abutting of hostilities in 1918. The amount at the top of the anatomy represents the Slavic apple dispatch into a new era of ability as a Christ-like amount offers advice from behind.
On January 22, Prague Burghal Museum Director Magdalena Jurikova told RFE/RL that the canvases are actuality stored in a “secret location” in Prague afterwards a acting exhibition from 2018 to 2020. Jurikova says the paintings will be confused to the boondocks of Moravsky Krumlov in the bounce of 2021 for addition acting affectation while the Prague development takes appearance over the advancing years.
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