Artists in the Collection

Petar Dobrović
(Pécs, 14 January 1890 – Belgrade, 27 January 1942)


Upon graduating from the Department of Sculpture at the Hungarian Royal National School of Arts and Crafts in Budapest, he started studying painting at the Hungarian Academy of Fine Arts in Budapest in 1909. His professors were Balló Ede, Bosznay István, Olgyai Viktor and Ferenczy Károly. Ferenczy’s influence was the most obvious. Dobrović
was in Paris doing further studies between 1912 and 1914 with short interruptions. He was acquainted with and adopted Cezanne’s artistic creed as his own. He was a member of the group called “The Seven,” he was engaged in avant-garde publications and was active in the circle of Kassák Lajos. He took part in the work of the painters’ colony in
Kecskemét. In 1921, he was elected president of the secessionist Serbo-Hungarian Baranja Republic, and after its downfall he was sentenced to death in absentia, which led to his permanent departure from Hungary. He moved to Belgrade, where, in 1923, he became a professor in the School of Art. During the second half of the twenties he changed his attitude towards painting, abandoning the strict discipline of form for the sake of “liberated colourism” and
the concept of the autonomy of “pure painting”. At the end of the decade he resided in Paris again. He regularly wrote art reviews for the Pariser Deutsche Zeitung. On his return to Belgrade, he became one of the founders of the artists’ group “Form”. At the beginning of the 1930s he worked and exhibited in Holland (Amsterdam, Rotterdam and The Hague). During 1934, he actively collaborated with the journal Danas. He started and taught a course of figure drawing at the Kolarac National University and in 1937 he was elected professor at the Academy of Fine Arts in Belgrade, which he co-founded along with Toma Rosandić and Milo Milunović. He stayed at the seaside, several months at a time, and the seaside landscapes were to mark his painting in the thirties. World War II, the resulting atmosphere and the impossibility of travelling at the beginning of 1940s iniciated another change in his
affinity and thematic range.