The basis of this collection is the legacy of the great entrepreneur Heinrich Liebieg (1839-1904), a generous patron, collector and member of the honorary curatorium of the North Bohemian Industrial Museum. Over the years, this unique private collection has been expanded to include the acquisition of the city of Liberec (by the Liebieg Fund), the Liberec Museum and, since 1953, the Regional Gallery in Liberec.
The paintings by German authors represent a representative cross-section of the developmental tendencies of German painting in the second half of the 19th century. The most numerous group is represented by artists studying or working in Munich. Early Munich open-air painting is represented by paintings by Max Haushoffer, the painter of the Chiemsee. Rare paintings with figurative themes by the realist Wilhelm Leibl complement the works of painters of the so-called Leibl circle (Wilhelm Trübner, Johannes Sperl). The Munich Biedermeier genre is represented by Carl Spitzweg, the psychological genre by Gabriel Max and Albert Keller, the rural by the works of Franz Defregger and Ernst Karl Georg Zimmermann and the modern animal genre by Heinrich Zügel. The portrait art is dominated by the works of Franz Lenbach. The Art Colony in Dachau is represented by the Art Nouveau landscape of Ludwig Dill, the Düsseldorf school is illustrated by works by Andreas Achenbach, August Becher and Hugo Vögel. Adolf Menzel, who was called the “Eye of Europe”
Austrian painting is characterized by a large number of authors. The largest collection consists of works by August Pettenkofen and Eduard Charlemont, who also advised Heinrich Liebieg on the purchase of works of art, as well as Eugene Jettel, Rudolf Alt and the versatile Franz Rumpler. August Pettenkofen is one of the founders of so-called “moody impressionism”. Eugen Jettel and Franz Rumpler are among its top representatives. Eduard Charlemont documents the period bias for the old, especially the Dutch masters, for their fondness for genre painting in a rich palette of colors and miniature drawing. He is a co-author of murals in the Burgtheater in Vienna. Rudolf Alt depicts in a realistic and realistic way panoramic views of European cities and individual buildings.
Heinrich Liebieg’s legacy also included 32 oils and 5 watercolors of 19th century French landscape painting . The permanent exhibition presents works by members of the so-called Barbizon School and a collection of ten paintings by Eugène Boudin.
Name Barbizon Schoolwas chosen according to the French city of Barbizon, located 50 km southeast of Paris. In the 1830s, a group of landscape painters settled here, trying in the environment of Fontainebleaus for a new understanding of nature in the visual arts. The Barbizonians were inspired by English and Dutch landscape painting; their main theme was forest and forest still life. They began to paint or draw directly on the open air and eventually came to the fact that the entire painting in nature and finished. In dealing with light, they sought natural light sessions and often chose a low horizon offering the illusion of identity with their own vision. They tried to create a “portrait of the landscape” by capturing the natural cut of the landscape at different times of the day. All this has taken a significant step in the development of French landscape painting towards realism. By loosening the handwriting and capturing natural moods, they approached Impressionism. The Barbizon School presents paintings by artists such as Charles-Francoise Daubigny, Narcisso Virgilio Diaz de la Peña and Théodore Rousseau.
The collection of seventeen paintings by Eugène Boudin (1824-1898) in the collections of the gallery is not only the largest outside France, but also one of the most valuable. E. Boudin was a painter of atmospheric changes on the coasts of Normandy, Bretagne, but also in Belgium, Holland and Italy. He is one of the direct predecessors of Impressionism. Charles Baudelaire gave him a long and famous passage in his critique of Salon 1859: “ Mr. Boudin in his paintings… introduces the immense charms of air and water… All these clouds of fantastic and radiant forms, those satin black or purple sky, the horizons, all those depths, all those gems rose to my head like a intoxicating drink… ”
The Barbizon School was of great importance for the development of individually different types of landscape painting, stimulated the emergence of so-called moody impressionism in the territory of today’s Austria and Hungary, and also significantly influenced Czech landscape painting, especially Antonín Chitussi and Wilhelm Riedl.
Oblastní galerie Liberec
The Liberec Regional Gallery is a specialized collecting institution – art museum – operating in the Liberec region. It takes care of extensive art collections and offers visitors a tour of three permanent exhibitions of European and Czech art.
The gallery regularly prepares short-term exhibitions and exhibitions in the graphic cabinet. The gallery’s instructor department provides accompanying programs for exhibitions and a cultural program for schools and the public throughout the year.
The gallery is open daily except Mondays from 10 am to 5 pm on Thursdays to 7 pm. Free admission every Thursday.