Pavao Perić graduated in 1927 from the Academy of Fine Arts in Zagreb, where he was taught by leading Croatian sculptors of the time, and was most influenced by sculptors Robert Frangeš-Mihanović and Frano Kršinić.
Perić sculpted in terracotta, bronze, stone and wood. He modelled a series of small female sculptures of local features mostly in terracotta, while in bronze and stone he sculpted many realistic and lyrical female portraits and memorial monuments. Inspired by archaic forms, he also tried his hand at wooden reliefs and sculptures. His original and rounded sculptural oeuvre is indisputably part of the tradition of modern Croatian sculpture.
Having modelled them either more expressively or more gracefully in typical poses, Pavao Perić developed his original sculptural concept best in his series of terracotta sculptures of women from the region of Dalmatian Zagora featuring accentuated volumes and gestures. In his Girls sculpture from 1941, Perić modelled two rural girls transforming them into refined small figurines of folklore idealisation, featuring long and richly pleated dresses, and beautified faces. In a contrapposto pose, the two girls exude an aura of calm inner concentration and youthful rapture.
Text: Tatijana Gareljić, museum consultant of the National Museum of Modern Art © National Museum of Modern Art, Zagreb
Translated by: Ana Janković
Photo: Goran Vranić © National Museum of Modern Art, Zagreb