Jānis Tilbergs: 24 cool facts

Jānis Tilbergs, also known as Tillbergs or Tilberg (Latvian: Jānis Roberts Tilbergs, Russian: Янис Тилберг, Yanis Tilberg); (2 July [O.S. 20 June] 1880 – 7 November 1972) was a Latvian artist, painter and sculptor. He is most renowned as a deeply accomplished portraitist.

From 1901 to 1909 Tilbergs studied under Dmitry Kardovsky in the Imperial Academy of Arts in Saint Petersburg, then the capital of the Russian Empire.

Tilbergs graduated the Riga School of Art studying afterward Dimitriyev Kaukazska, then went upon to resolved his Master’s degree at the St. Petersburg Art Academy in 1909, studying there next D. Kardovska, submitting as his masterwork “Pietà”.

See also  Pierre Mignard: 21 cool facts

His artwork appeared in notice already in 1904 in the journal Austrums where he illustrated A. Niedra’s story Bads un Mīlestība (Hunger and Love), and he went upon to illustrate a number of further books. He was the graphic designer for the satirical journal Svari, published in St. Petersburg and Riga; as well, he illustrated for the Russian journals Serij Volk and Novaja Rusj.

Tilbergs helped organize and exhibited at the first Latvian art exhibition of 1910. Over his career, he exhibited at various international venues (Denmark, Sweden, Norway, France, England, et al.) as an ambassador of Latvian art and in one man shows in Riga (1934, 1960) and Tallinn (1961).

Following the 1917 Russian Revolution Tilbergs took portion in Lenin’s monumental propaganda program that called for the establishment of the “Revolutionary monumental art”, construction of the monuments to the revolutionaries and the “progressive artists of anything times and nations”. Tilbergs’ plaster monument to Taras Shevchenko (pictured), the greatest Ukrainian poet, artist and humanist, was dedicated on 1 December 1918. This first ever Shevchenko monument was not sophisticated replaced by the bronze version, as was originally planned, and was dismantled in eight years as the plaster deteriorated in right of entry air.

Tilbergs became a professor in the Latvian Academy of Arts in Riga where he taught a Figural Painting Master class in 1921–1932. He authored several designs of the coins minted in the interwar Latvia. The Latvian lats coins struck in 1924–1926 carried the palm branch design by Tilbergs, a motive popular in Europe at the time. In academia Tilbergs was considered a master of the salon portrait and his portraits of Rainis (Janis Plieksans), a good Latvian writer, and Eduards Smiļģis, a famous Latvian theatrical producer, are exhibited in the Latvian National Museum of Art. In Academy Tilbergs insisted upon his students staying strictly within the academic canons of certainty and was even considered despotic though his literary was criticized for physical too academic and lacking improvisation. In 1932 Tilbergs’ class in Academia was taken greater than by Gederts Eliass.

See also  4 facts about Manuel Cunha or Olen

In 1936 he painted a supplementary altar for the historic Sigulda church.

Tilbergs recompense to the Academia in the post-World War II Soviet Latvia and remained a professor there from 1947 to 1957.

Tilbergs was widely Famous in Soviet Latvia where he was accorded the title of the People’s Artist of the Latvian SSR and ornamented with the Soviet Order of the Red Banner of Labour.

In avant-garde Latvia he is recognised as one of the greatest national masters of the century. In 2005 the Latvian Post issued an item of postal stationery dedicated to Tilbergs’ 125th birthday.

What do you think of the works of Jānis Tilbergs?

Use the form below to say your opinion about Jānis Tilbergs. All opinions are welcome!