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Osiemnastowieczne figury przydrożne w Buczaczu. Uwagi o inspiracjach czeskich w twórczości Bernarda Meretyna

Krasny, Piotr

English Title: Eighteenth-century roadside shrines at Buczacz. Some observations on the Bohemian origins of Bernard Meretyn’s creative work

In: Prace z Historii Sztuki, 21 (1995), 65-75 + Abb. 1-11.

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Translation of abstract (English)

In the suburbs of Buczacz (in the former Ruthenian Voivodeship of the Polish Kingdom) there rise two magnificent roadside shrines dedicated to St John of Nepomuk (1750) and to the lmmaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary (1751). These monuments were raised by Bernard Meretyn and embellished with sculptures by Jan Jerzy Pinsel. Thus they are the joint work of an architect and a sculptor, tightly integrated in accordance with the Baroque rule of ‘un bel composto’ formulated by Gian Lorenzo Bemini. The Roman architects implemented this rule by drawing precise designs of the statues which were to adorn their structures. The sculptors’ task was Iimited to translating these concepts into three dimensions. Similar relations between architects and sculptors existed in 18th century Central Europe. The most prominent architects there (Johann Lucas von Hildebrandt and Kilian Ignaz Dientzenhofer) as a rule chose their permanent collaborators from among sculptors. Also Meretyn and Pinsel worked together at numerous "fabricae", their professional relations finding reflection in social contacts (the architect was the godfather of the sculptor’s first son). lt may therefore be supposed that Pinsel received from Meretyn designs for Buczacz sculptures, defining at least their general forms (arrangement of figures, gestures, draping of robes). The roadside shrines at Buczacz clearly recall 18th century Bohemian monuments, this appearing both in their architectural forms and in the forms of the crowning sculptures. The shrine of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary is very much like the monument of St John of Nepomuk in the market place at Počatki (Franz Baugut, 1717-1720), while the motif of small pedestals with figures of putti, woven into its structure, has been borrowed from the monument at the Church of St Ursula in Prague (Kilian Ignaz Dientzenhofer and Ignaz Franz Platzer, 1746-1747). The other Buczacz shrine imitates the Bohemian monuments developed into a specific triptych (the figure of the patron saint on a pedestal and two flanking smaller figures set on consoles), which took form in the monuments set up in the early 18th century on the Charles Bridge in Prague. It is also worth noting that the statue of St John of Nepomuk on the Buczacz monument clearly resembles the sculpture of that martyr saint which adorns the portal of St George’s Church on the Hradshin in Prague (Ferdinand Maximilian Brokoff 1721-1722). Thus the Buczacz shrines are evident examples of the impact of 18th century Bohemian art on Polish art, affording an important argument for the Central-European origin of Bernard Meretyn’s creative work.

Document type: Article
Version: Secondary publication
Date Deposited: 29 Sep 2011 14:11
Faculties / Institutes: Research Project, Working Group > Individuals
DDC-classification: Plastic arts, numismatics, ceramics, metalwork
Controlled Keywords: Meretyn, Bernard, Pinzel, Skulptur, Butschatsch
Subject (classification): Sculpture
Countries/Regions: East Europe
Collection: ART-Dok Central and Eastern Europe