Jan Zrzavy ( 5. 11. 1890 Okrouhlice - 12. 10. 1977 Prague ) painter and graphic artist
In 1906 he tried to be admitted to the School of Applied Arts in Prague. The following year he was admitted to the School of Applied Arts in Prague, where he studied under prof. E. Dite, but was expelled in two years. In 1910 he was in contact with the Sursum association, and since 1911, when he had an expressionist period that is focused on symbolic ideas, he met with Bohumil Kubišta, whose friendship had a great influence on him. In 1912 he painted in a typical symbolist concept with accentuated Leonard chiaroscuro and delicate firm background. In the same year he was admitted as a member of the Manes Association of Fine Artists, leaving the association in 1917 to protest against his small representation
at exhibitions of the association. In 1917 he participated in the formation of the Tvrdosijni group, with which he also exhibited. At the beginning of the 1920s, the symbolist figuration coped with cubic stimuli, but it turned into a neoclassical form especially in the landscapes. In 1923 he became a member of Umelecka beseda. He collaborated with O. Storch-Marien and Aventinum. In 1924 he traveled to Paris, a year later to Brittany, in 1927 he returned to Prague, then went to Paris for a short time. From the 1930s he practically cultivated blotchy to chiaroscuro painting with fine lines. He combined themes from Italy with religious motifs or seaports. since 1939 he stopped going to France, since 1941 commuted to Vodnany, where he painted landscapes with ponds. After 1946 he returned to Paris and Brittany for a while. From 1948 he almost did not exhibit until 1957 he had an exhibition in Prague. In 1965 appointed national artist. He responded to his travels to Greece (1967, 1969, 1972), although he had included ancient motifs in his work before. He also returned to his native Okrouhlice. His work depicts a comprehensive arc from Art Nouveau and turn-of-the-century symbolism with distinctive touches of expressionism and exceptionally cubism, to a tight meditative painting of mostly ever-repeated motifs - home and Brittany landscape, Loreto Square in Prague and Piazetta in Venice, Christ and the ancient head and an androgynous figure in which the lyrical experience of the world is emphasized. The importance of Zrzavý for modern Czech art was enormous. He exhibited in 1918 in Prague, 1920 in Berlin, 1923 in Topic Salon, 1927 in the Aventine Mansion, 1934 in the Ales Hall of the Umelecka beseda, 1940 in Prague, 1947 in the J. R. Vilimek Gallery, 1957 in Prague, 1963 in the National Gallery in Prague. He exhibited collectively with the Tvrdosijni group in 1918, 1920, 1921, 1923 in Prague, Brno, Kosice, Dresden, Berlin, Hanover, Vienna and Geneva. His works are represented in the National Gallery in Prague and many other state and private collections in the Czech Republic and abroad. His paintings are the pride of every collection.