2000 | 1 | 84-91
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JANIS ROZENTALS AND NORDIC ART (Janis Rozentals un Ziemelvalstu maksla)

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The Latvian artist Janis Rozentals first encountered art from the Nordic countries while a student in St. Petersburg, and in the early 20th century there were several exhibitions of art from that region in Riga. Of great influence in the painter's thinking was the Scandinavian industrial and international arts show which took place in Stockholm in 1897. Rozentals gained even greater opportunities to study Nordic art after he marred the Finnish singer Elli Forsell in 1903. Rozentals was most influenced by the work of the Finnish artists Akseli Gallen-Kallela, Albert Edelfelt, Pekka Halonen, Verner Thome. He was attracted to the simplicity and severity of form which was found in those works - styles which fully conformed to the Latvian artist's ideas about the unique nature of national schools of the arts. The work of Akseli Gallen-Kallela was of the greatest importance. In this article, the author also takes the first professional look at the influence of the Swedish authors Carl Larsson and Anders Zorn and the Norwegian painter Edward Munch on Rozentals work. In Carl Larsson's work Rozentals was attracted to the decorative nature of forms that were used, while in Anders Zorn's work he admired the virtuoso techniques of painting that were applied. Munch attracted Rozentals through his handling of themes from the area of the so called 'Biological Romanticism'. The analogies that are reviewed in this paper show that Rozentals, after accumulating various influences from Nordic art, created a full and unique branch of European art.
  • Inta Pujate, Latvian Academy of Art, Latgale Branch, Baznicas iela 34a, Rezekne LV-4601, Latvia
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