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“Baltars” Workshop

Ludmila Neimiševa

The series „Classics of Latvian Art” presents a book about the porcelain painting workshop Baltars. The legacy of Baltars is an integral part of the Latvian cultural canon, and today it can be regarded as Latvian Classical Modernism’s contribution to the history of 20th century art.

Baltars

The founders of the workshop and its leading artists were the painters Romans Suta and Aleksandra Beļcova and the graphic artist Sigismunds Vidbergs; the painters Erasts Šveics and Lūcija Kuršinska also participated. The technical part of the work was carried out under the leadership of Dmitry Abrosimov.

On 1 February 1925 the company for artistic manufacturing and the popularisation of art Baltars (from the Latin ars Baltica – Baltic art) was officially registered, and its director became Sigismunds Vidbergs. With the name of the enterprise the artists underlined the connection of their creative ideas with a concrete place and nation, with the traditions and notions of beauty that had been maintained in the country for centuries. In the history of art, the Baltars company is recognised as a workshop where during the period from 1925 until 1928 exceptional works of art were produced. Their significance on the general scene of European art is clearly obvious and has not diminished over time. Baltars articles can be recognised by the studio mark (a black, brown, red or green triangle with an inscription along the perimeter BALTARS RĪGA).

Ludmila Neimiševa
Baltars

“The short-lived period of activity of the Baltars artists left its mark in the history of Latvian decorative arts, and it also formed a significant part of Latvian Classical Modernism of the 1920s. It is no accident that in the 1990s, when a touring exhibition of Latvian art of the 1920s–30s was shown in various countries in Europe (Germany, the Netherlands, Denmark and Sweden), pride of place was given to Baltars porcelain. (..) Art porcelain elicits keen interest both as a wonderful example of the creative oeuvre of painters and graphic artists in the field of the decorative arts, and also as a successful utilisation of trends like Classical Modernism and Art Déco as a reflection of an age and its aesthetic ideals.”

The series „Classics of Latvian Art” includes books of medium size, offering an easily perceptible information about Latvian classical artists and their works. Similar to the „STUDIJA Library” the series „Classics of Latvian Art” is intended as bilingual (Latvian/English), richly illustrated publications. An attractive supplement at the end of each book is a timeline where the life of Latvian artists can be viewed within the context of world events, revealing connections, parallels or just interesting coincidences.

 

 

 

 

“Baltars” Workshop

2017
In Latvian and English
Design: Anta Pence
112 lpp., paperback, ISBN 978-9934-565-06-9
Supported by: the State Culture Capital Foundation, Latvian National Museum of Art, Dina and Jānis Zuzāni

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