Works of Graphics at Lviv Historical Museum

Fund collection “Graphics” at Lviv Historical Museum numbers 17,210 units. Art works are divided into groups, the first one - graphic works themselves, xylograhy, copper engraving, sphalerite, etchings, lithography, linocut, the second one - drawings made with pencil, water colors, ink, gouache.

Subject of the collection is rather various: portraits of political leaders, prominent figures of science i culture, historical events, battle compositions, military uniforms, weapons, flags, landscapes, views of castles and palaces, ancient and mythological, biblical scenes, cartoons, everyday scenes, playing cards. A special place is given to the collection of book-plates (appr. 1 thousand units).

The earliest artworks of the collection are dated back to the end of the 16th - the beginning of the 17th centuries. They are mostly the works on religious subject: Bible illustrations, engravings of the icons, images of the saints.

The collection represents engravings of Italian artists, copied from the paintings of famous painters of the sixteenth-seventeenth centuries: Raphael, Sebastian Antonio Allegra Koredzho, Annibale Carracci, Guido Reni, Andrea Del Sarto, Paolo Cagliari Veronese, and Flemish artists Peter Paul Rubens, Anthony van Dyck, the Dutch Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn.

The collection contains the works of one of the most famous European engravers of the seventeenth century Jeremiah Falk, two of which are – “Flora” and “Pallas Athena”.

In the collection there are the works of wonderful Ukrainian artists of the 17th century Yuriy Shymonovyc (6 units) and Dionysiy Sinkevych (xylograhy “Krehiv Monastery”). The pearl of the collection is the xylograhy with the oldest known image of Lviv, which is copied from the drawing of Italian engineer Aurelio Passarotti.
   The collection has over 600 portraits of kings of Poland.

Extraordinary interest is raised by the collection graphic portraits (more than 100 units) of Jan III Sobieski and his family.

More than 400 male and female portraits of the collection introduces us to the representatives of the Polish magnate families of Czartoryski, Potocki, Lubomurski, Ossolinski, Dzieduszycki and the Lithuanian family of Radziwill.

A great deal of the portraits of prominent Ukrainian figures, including Princes of Kyiv, Ukrainian Hetmen, famous writers are represented at the collection. The collection also contains the portraits of famous Russian historical figures.
    At the collection they store the works of Ukrainian engravers of the 2nd half of 18th century - brothers Adam and Josyph Hochembski and the work of Ivan Fylypovych.

An extremely valuable part of the collection is formed by the engravings which represent the landscape of Lviv, other cities of Galicia, historical events, portraits of famous people. Many of them belong to the artists of the nineteenth century who lived in Lviv and worked in the lithographic workshop of Petro Piller. Among them there are - Anton Lange, Karol Auer, Bogush Stanchinsky, Teofil Zychowicz.

The collection contains an interesting selection of drawings in pencil, ink, water colors, pastels, the selection of sich painters as Juliusz Kossak (10 units), Alfred Kamienobrodzki (27 units), Franciszek Kowalisyszyn (52 items), Emmanuel Kronbah (16 units), Franz Gerstenberger (5 units).

In the collection there are stored the lithographies (145 items) of the Polish painter and graphic artist Napoleon Orda (1807-1883), published in Warsaw. They represent the landscape of the towns and villages in Galicia, the castles and fortresses of Ukraine.

There are a lot of engravings and lithographs copied from the works of Polish artists of the nineteenth century, - Artur Grottger, Anton Leshchinsky, Tadeusz Rybkowski, Jan Matejko.

We distinguish a selection of works devoted to the life and work of the famous Polish composer Frederic Chopin. They were transferred in 1939 from a private collection of Cornelia Parnas.
   Graphic art of the first half of the twentieth century is mainly represented by the works of Lviv School artists: Olena Kulchytska (1877-1967), Leopold Levytsky (1906-1973), Stephaniya Hebus-Baranetska (1905-1985), Jusepha Kratohvyli-Vidymska (1878-1965). Very interesting are the works of Margaryta Starovoyt, Anna Davydovych, Jaroslava Muzyka.

Many interesting works belong to younger generation of Lviv School – the artists of 1970s - 1990s,  Mychaylo Gladkyy, Vitaliy Schnittke, Evgen Beznisko, Anna Levitska, Mychaylo Barabash, Serhiy Shahverdov, Ulyana Slyusar.

The maqjority of fund collection came to LHM from the funds of National Museum of King Jan III.

Diring the postwar years the collection was enriched by purchases and gifts, often of Lviv artists, companies, individual institutions and collectors.

An extremely valuable part of the collection is related to liberation struggle of Ukrainian people.
  These are greeting cards, drawn in 1950s in Stalin's camps in Taishet and Inti, a set of 72 satirical drawings by V.Shahalo for OUN underground printing “Lisovyk”, 58 portraits of political prisoners V.Mytarchuk and D.Vynnychk.

This collection represents the works of Ukrainian diaspora artists - book-plates of Lidiya Paliy from Toronto xylographies of Roman Vasylyshyn (Philadelphia), of graphic artist T. Shumylovych (USA).

Poetic charm, creative imagination, variability of the world, image of a human in the art of engraving from the fund group of LHM will surprise the audience of future exhibitions and expositions.