These pictures were taken by my sister on a recent visit to Prague last month. They contain a great deal more close-up information than some published images of each large canvas. It’s interesting to note the compressed value ranges that Mucha uses, and the contrasting key value and colour notes with the background in some instances. Also very noteworthy is the quality of light that often emanates from within the picture frame, lending the scene an other-worldly or mythical quality. In a few shots, we see a person standing in front of the picture, which gives us a sense of the immense scale of these works.
On a recent trip to Prague, my sister visited The Slav Epic, a series of 20 monumental canvases, depicting 20 key episodes in Slav history, from ancient to modern day.
Mucha is best known for the theatre posters and art nouveau posters he produced while living in Paris in the 1880’s and 1890’s.
The Slav Epic, Cycle #1, The Slavs in their Original Homeland, 1912
The Slav Epic, Cycle #2, The Celebration of Slantovit, 1912
The Slav Epic, Cycle #3, Introduction of the Slavonic Liturgy in Greater Moravia, 1912
The Slav Epic, Cycle #5, King Premysl Otakar II of Bohemia, 1924
The Slav Epic, Cycle #6, The Coronation of Serbian Tsar Stepan Dusan, 1926
The Slav Epic, Cycle #7, Milic of Kromeriz, 1916
The Slav Epic, Cycle #8, Master Jan Huls teaching at the Bethlehem Chapel: Truth Prevails, 1916
The Slav Epic, Cycle #9, The Meeting at Krizky, 1916
The Slav Epic, Cycle #10, After the Battle of Grunewald, 1924
The Slav Epic, Cycle #11, After the Battle of Vitkov, 1916
The Slav Epic, Cycle #12, Petr of Chelcice, 1918
The Slav Epic, Cycle #15, The Printing of the Bible in Kralice in Ivancice, 1914
The Slav Epic, Cycle #16, Jan Amos Komensky, 1918
The Slav Epic, Cycle #17, The Holy Mount Athos, 1926
The Slav Epic, Cycle #18, The Oath of Onlandina under the Slavic Linden Tree, 1926
The Slav Epic, Cycle #19, The Abolition of Serfdom in Russia
The Slav Epic, Cycle #20, Apotheosis of the Slavs