Ljubo Babić
Construction, 1919.
oil on canvas, 78 cm x 100 cm

Painter and art historian Ljubo Babić was a key figure in Croatian culture and art. After having graduated from the Provisional Advanced School of Arts and Crafts in Zagreb, where he was taught by painter Menci Clement Crnčić, he studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich. He also obtained a degree in art history from the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences in Zagreb. He taught at the Provisional Advanced School of Arts and Crafts in Zagreb, which was later transformed into the Academy of Fine Arts, and was the director of the Modern Gallery, today the National Museum of Modern Art in Zagreb, and a member of the Yugoslav Academy of Sciences and Arts.

Babić’s painting Construction from 1919 is an emblematic painting with the iconography of a growing modern city and hints of expressionist tendencies that marked the first (1916–1919) and second phase (1919–1921) of the Croatian Spring Salon exhibitions, renamed the Spring Salon in 1919. They are manifested in the strong and energetic stylistic gesture, as well as in the expressive use of red colour.

Text: Ivana Rončević Elezović, museum consultant © National Museum of Modern Art, Zagreb
Translated by: Robertina Tomić
Photo: Goran Vranić © National Museum of Modern Art, Zagreb, 2022.

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