Artworks in the Collection

Serbia (1904)

Inspired by the preparations for The First Yugoslav Art Exhibition in 1904, Nadežda channeled all her artistic curiosity exclusively into landscapes. The Resnik cycle created in the area surrounding her family estate during the summer is of special importance. Preoccupied with painting outdoors from her first days in Munich, the artist does not show her enrapture with the countryside and its changes under the influence of light, time of day, season or weather. She is less amused with the reality of what she sees and observes the scenery through its colours. She often paints in glazed tempera, according to the method of her teacher, Julius Exter. Overwhelmed by fiery red tones, painted in one go with broad strokes, smooth facture and rather thinly, these paintings belong to her first Serbian period. As champions of colour, they indicate the preparations for The Fauvist Salon (1905) in Paris, but in traditional Serbia they received only negative reviews. Unlike other paintings from the Resnik cycle of incomparable achivements, which Nadežda entered for The Yugoslav Exhibition, the landscape Serbia remained unfinished for unknown reasons and was not even meant to be displayed. Whether dissatisfied with the layout of the composition, or interrupted in mid-work, a year later, the artist painted another painting entitled Landscape on the back side, a painting with colours far more provocative, more clearly articulated and technically more complete, and accepted as the front side of the painting from the moment it was finished.

Nadežda Petrović