1 800 000 CZK
| 72 000 €
Vlaho Bukovac is a major figure in Croatian and Czech modern art from the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Through help from his patron, Count Medo Pucić, in 1877 the young artist was able to travel to Paris, where he wanted to study under Jaroslav Čermák. Because the Czech artist had already fallen seriously ill by this time, Bukovac entered Alexandre Cabanel's studio at the École des Beaux-Arts. During his very first year at the academy, Cabanel recommended one of Bukovac's paintings to be exhibited at the Salon. Bukovac spent fifteen long years abroad, mostly in Paris but also in England, where he was primarily a portrait painter. At the urging of the arts and intellectual scene in his native country, Bukovac returned to Croatia and became the head of the brand-new Academy of Fine Arts in Zagreb. In 1903 he was offered a teaching post at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague, which he accepted. He lived and worked in Prague from November 1903 all the way up until his death. Students who studied under Bukovac included Emil Filla, Bohumil Kubišta, Bedřich Feigl, Václav Špála, Antonín Procházka and Josef Šíma. The work on auction here, from the artist's relatively long Prague period, shows Bukovac's typical mixing of Impressionism and Pointillism. The painting, portraying two young women in the studio, is very close to Bukovac's 1916 painting Abandoned, which fetched a high price at a Dorotheum auction held in 2005. The painting is listed in the catalogue raisonné under the title "Kolegice" and is number 1013 in the monograph by Vera Kružić-Uchytil: Vlaho Bukovac – Život i djelo, Zagreb, 2005. The work has also been published under the title "Double Portrait" in: Zlatá Praha, vol. XXXVII, 1920, no. 27-28. Oil on canvas, signed and dated "Vlaho Bukovac" on bottom right. Original frame by Jindřich Eck.