Paintings Remain in Szczecin!

Two paintings – "Fishmongers" by August Ludwig Most and "Szczecin. View of the Harbour from the Dunzig River and a Panorama of the City” by an artist signing their works "J.R." – remian in Szczecin in result of negotiations of the representatives of Society of Friends of The National Museum in Szczecin with the owner of the pictures - mBank. 

 

Both works of art were purchased two decades ago on account of efforts of Dr. Bogdana Kozińska, the then Manager of The Szczecin History Museum. The purchase was sponsored by BREBank, present mBank. The paintings were put on long-term deposit at the Museum and were displayed at permanent exhibitions of The National Museum in Szczecin – The Szczecin History Museum. 

At the beginning of this year, the owner of the paintings decided to sell its collection of works of art including the Szczecin paintings. The paintings that have been under care of The National Museum in Szczecin were to be auctioned. Thanks to the efforts of the representatives of The Society of Friends of The National Museum, mBank abandoned this intention. The works were purchased by The Society of Friends of The National Museum in Szczecin and will continue to be presented to the public at The National Museum in Szczecin - The Szczecin History Museum.

The National Museum in Szczecin would like to thank The Society of Friends of The NMS, which, using their contacts, persuaded mBank to sell works without auctioning. At this point, however, we are satisfied to say that the Museum has not remained alone in its efforts to buy the paintings. The Museum plan consisted of using the right of preemption at the auctioned price, which involved raising funds. A declaration of support was made by Olgierd Geblewicz, The Marshal of the West Pomeranian Voivodeship and Krzysztof Soska, Deputy President of Szczecin, and, of course, Edward Osina, the President of the Society of Friends of The National Museum in Szczecin, and many others. The Museum did not make this information public, as it could affect auctioning. The National Museum in Szczecin would like to thank everyone who was ready to get involved in the matter of the paintings' remaining in Szczecin.

All financial liabilities have been taken over by The Society of Friends of the NMS, whose funds origin exclusively from social donations. Therefore, all those who were ready to support the purchase of paintings are requested to communicate with The Society of Friends of the NMS or with the Museum directly if they still maintained their readiness to contribute as we have numerous plans to expand the collection and any help will be used fairly.

We invite Visitors to The National Museum in Szczecin – The Szczecin History Museum. According to the new schedule, the Museum is open from Thursday to Sunday between 12.00 at noon and 6.00 P.M. "Fishmongers” by August Ludwig Most may be seen at a smaller exposition entitled "Biedermeier room” (1st floor) and "Szczecin. View of the Harbour from the Dunzig River and a Panorama of the City” by J.R. is temporarily available at "Hans Stettiner and Jan Szczeciński. Everyday Life in Szczecin of the 20th Century” exhibition (2nd floor).

 

most copy

August Ludwig Most (1807–1883)
Fishmongers, 1846
oil, canvas, 79 x 94 cm
property of The Society of Friends of The National Museum in Szczecin, deposit at The National Museum in Szczecin

Paintings by one of the most valued and popular artists in Germany at that time - August Ludwig Most (1807–1883) became the essence of Szczecin Biedermeier painting. Coming from a Szczecin craftsmen family, he gained artistic education from a Stargard painter Thiele and at the Royal-Prussian Academy of Fine Arts in Berlin. Most settled in Szczecin when he was already a recognizable artist, so it is not surprising that his works were commissioned by a significant part of the Szczecin elite. His art testifies not only to high artistic skills, but also to the position and aspirations of the commissionning individuals. The artist immortalized people and scenes from their lives with great passion, an example of which are "Fishmongers" from 1836, depicting a view that was an everyday one in all port cities.

 

jr copy

J. R. monogramist, active at the turn of 19th and 20th centuries
Szczecin. View of the Harbour from the Dunzig River and a Panorama of the City, 1899
oil, canvas, 70 x 112 cm
property of The Society of Friends of The National Museum in Szczecin, deposit at The National Museum in Szczecin

An unusual work referring to the maritime theme and port traditions of the city is the painting from 1899 by Monogramist JR, recently identified as J. Richter. The work is interesting primarily because of its iconographic and artistic value. The port of Szczecin, along with moored sailing ships and steamers, was presented with extraordinary precision and details, such as the entire rigging or clearly visible sails sewing. The forest of masts of sailing ships mooring at both quays additionally created a perspective that focuses the viewer's attention on the centrally presented sharp tower of the St. Jacob's church, which, accompanied by the clock tower and the bell tower of the Pomeranian Dukes' Castle, has been an inseparable element of the panorama of Szczecin to this day.