Sculpture dimensions: 47×52 cm
Ivan Meštrović was a Croatian architect and sculptor whose work made him one of the most influential artists of the 20th century. From humble beginnings in the small village of Vrpolje, he went on to study at the prestigious Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna. Here he developed his raw ability and passion for stone cutting into a finely tuned talent.
His first sculpture to gain international recognition was 1905 piece entitled ‘Well of Life’. Virtually all of his works pay homage to his Croatian upbringing. His early works were inspired by the heroes of Croatian folklore, as well as the struggles of the Croatian people against various oppressors throughout history. After the First World War, Meštrović started to draw influence from religion. He became entranced by the works of Michelangelo and the influence can be seen in his later works. Meštrović spent his later years as a citizen of the United States. He had tenures as an art professor at Syracuse University and the University of Notre Dame. Before his death Meštrović declared all of his Croatian estate to be left to the people of Croatia.
This included over 400 sculptures and drawings. He will forever be remembered as one of the most important figures in Croatian history.
Awards & Achievements
He was awarded the American Academy of the Arts and Letters gold medal for sculpture in 1953.
Ivan Mestrovic was the first artist to have a solo exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, which went on display in 1915.
He also was the first artist to have his work exhibited at the Metropolitan Museum of Art while he was still alive.