The Bulgarian Cultural Institute in Prague is the initiator of the ‘Jaroslav Věšín (1860–1915)’ project, which includes a representative exhibition and a trilingual catalogue. The exhibition will open in the Institute’s gallery with some of the artist’s impressive pictorial canvases preserved in the archives of the National Museum of Military History. The event is organised in partnership with the Embassy of the Republic of Bulgaria and the National Museum of Military History in Sofia, with the support of the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Bulgaria.
After the Bulgarian Cultural Institute in Prague consecutively presented the oeuvres of Josef Pitter and Ivan (Jan) Mrkvička, the focus of attention is now directed on another of the great Czech artists who adopted Bulgaria as their second homeland—Jaroslav Věšín. The painter, who brought enormous influence to bear on Bulgarian art and the pictorial school of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, with works ranging from compositions with hunting scenes and Slavic customs to his battle genre military canvases, reveals an artistic world of hues, images and heroes born of the vital spirit of an artist for whom boundaries were not a state of the spirit.
The National Museum of Military History preserves most of his artworks on military thematics—paintings, aquarelles, drawings, as well as personal belongings. A selection of these works, created in the period 1906–1914, will be exhibited in the gallery of the Institute. In these outstanding canvases, it is life in peacetime and in war, ceremoniousness and cruelty, glamour and affliction, that meet. Věšín was not only the first military artist in Bulgaria, but also the first to reject the war—categorically and overtly,despite the position he occupied.
The event will be enriched with the presentation of a trilingual catalogue (in Bulgarian, Czech and English). The publication was made possible in partnership with a number of Czech galleries: the National Gallery in Prague, the Gallery of West Bohemia in Pilsen, the Ostrava Art Gallery, the Moravian Gallery in Brno, as well as the Moravian Regional Museum and the Castle of Maleč. With its scientific studies and rich illustrations, the catalogue is intended both for art professionals and a wider range of audiences, as it combines art criticism and an informative aspect.