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Christmas 2021: Folk Faience Issue number
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0.90 €
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      Ignác Bizmayer (20th April 1922, Košolná – 15th August 2019, Modra) was one of the most important artists engaged in ceramic figure creation. Based on folk faience and Slovak folk habits and traditions, his sculptures were also inspired by the works of Ferdiš Kostka, Heřman Landsfeld and Franta and Joža Úprka. As an apprentice and junior employee of Slovenská ľudová majolika, a.s. (Slovak folk mailoica) he painted plates, vases and jugs of various sizes following set patterns. However, he gradually began to innovate and improved his skills. Hanging ceramic reliefs that were engraved before they were painted caught his attention. His first figure sculptures and compositions carried painted details, but later he rendered them only using his fingers. Ignác Bizmayer fully mastered this technique, his artwork faithfully depicts expressions. Bizmayer’s works include various themes: the Bible, the motifs of viticultural activities throughout the year, anti-fascist resistance, thieves and the traditions inspired by Juraj Jánošík, bands of folk musicians and solo singers, women and men farming, doing household chores etc., wedding motifs, animals and birds, and children. The limited range of themes made it possible for the artist to capture the same motif in several works of art, polished to the highest quality over years of practice. 

     The pieces by Ignác Bizmayer that depict biblical themes include a ceramic relief of the Madonna. It was sculpted in 1986 and depicts Mary holding the Baby Jesus in her arms and a dove. The relief plate, the Adoration of the Magi (1994), depicts a traditional nativity scene with the Baby Jesus in a crib with Three Magi. An example of a winter composition is the ceramic sculpture, Women from Liptovská Lužná (1981), who are dressed in the traditional regional costume. These works of art are part of the collection of the Slovak National Museum – The Ľudovít Štúr Museum in Modra which also administers the Ignác Bizmayer Art Gallery.  

     The most significant awards and decorations received by Ignác Bizmayer include the title of National Artist (1982), the Karol Plicka Tribute (1995) and the Pribina Cross First Class, for his considerable contribution to the development of fine art and figure sculpting (2003).  

  Sylvia Hrdlovičová

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