In conjunction with The Unknown Klimt – Love, Death, Ecstasy exhibition in the City Museum of Rijeka, two accompanying events were organized on 26th October in the Ceremonial Hall of the Sugar Palace.
First of all the exhibition’s catalog was presented. This is a richly illustrated edition of 236 pages in Croatian and English, dedicated to the life and work of the three artists whose works can be seen on the second floor of the Palace. They are Gustav Klimt, Ernst Klimt and Franz Matsch. The focus is on Gustav Klimt, the greatest of the three Viennese painters whose canvases were made to adorn the vault of Rijeka’s Croatian National Theatre Ivan pl. Zajc. The catalog features the texts of 15 leading national and international connoisseurs of Klimt’s work.
The book’s emphasis is on Klimt’s earlier artistic phase, which means that the texts speak mostly about the influences of his early painting style on the Secession movement that followed the Rijeka period. The illustrations do not only depict the Rijeka works but also works that show the influences of predecessors and contemporaries on the stylistic development of the most famous of the three painters who decorated the vault of the Rijeka theatre in 1885.
Speaking about the catalog were: Ervin Dubrović, Irena Kraševac, Marian Bisanz-Prakken, Julija Lozzi Barković, Daina Glavočić, and Deborah Pustišek Antić, who is also the author of the exhibition and the editor of the catalog.
After the presentation of the catalog, a symposium dedicated to Klimt and his time was held. Ervin Dubrović opened the exhibitor’s series with the theme Viennese and Venetian Artists in Rijeka’s Theatre. This was followed by presentations by Deborah Pustišek Antić (The Perception of Gustav Klimt in Rijeka until the 1940s), Marian Bisanz-Prakken (Studies for Rijeka Paintings), Irena Kraševac (Rijeka Paintings – Iconographic Programme), and Ana Rušin Bulić and Slobodan Radić (Conservation and Restoration Work on Paintings). Anđelko Pedišić from the Croatian Conservation Institute, head of the Office for Departments outside Zagreb, addressed the participants at the conference.
For this occasion only, a folder of Klimt’s drawings published in 1922 was exhibited in the Ceremonial Hall.