Franz Gruss (June 3, 1891 Easter Egg - September 28, 1979 Mistelbach)
„In the spring of 1946 - expulsion. As I belonged to Vienna according to my nationality certificate and passport, I had to go to Vienna. My life work remained in Czechoslovakia. Paintings My Father, My Mother's Portrait, My Father on Death's Bed, My Wife, Family I & II, Sisters, Meeting I & II, Great Concept of Drowned, In addition to all Private Owned Works would be worth mentioning here. When I wanted to take away a thick roll with canvases of larger-format paintings taken from the frames, I was told: That will stay here !! That's art !! ' Only then did I learn that my work was art! "
Franz Gruss' life story reflects the historical events of the first half of the 20th century. It absorbs experiences from the coexistence and clash of the German and Czech elements, art in the Wiener Secession, the establishment of Czechoslovakia and the acquisition of the status of minority, Soviet prison camps, two World Wars, two interwar decades spent alone and the expulsion of people considered as Germans. Dramatic experiences, sufficient for several human lives, came together in the story of a painter and sculptor. The influence of nature and the fate of the inhabitants of Kraslice was reflected in Gruss's work - he painted landscapes, paintings from everyday life of woodworkers or farmers, and devoted himself to human relations. An example of interwar civilism is the Dorfschule [Rural School], reflecting the social situation of the time. Civilian themes are superimposed on serious themes with the motive of death, based on biblical stories or events of unfortunate coincidences. In most figural paintings he worked with abstracts. shape and disproportionate stretching of human bodies drawing on Mannerism.
As one of the few artists, Franz Gruss mastered the fresco technique precisely. The most important and at the same time politically most discussed was Apotheosa in the Church of Sts. Klara in Cheb.