Nikola Martinoski

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Nikola Martinoski, sometimes spelled Martinovski (Macedonian: Никола Мартиноски), (August 18, 1903 - February 7, 1973) was a Yugoslavian and Macedonian painter[1] who is now generally considered a founder of contemporary Macedonian art.[2] He is best known for his Mother with Child painting which, although first created in the 1930s, was not completed until the 1960s. He is also known as "The Doctor" for the great amount of paintings he donated to modern art.[2]

Early Life[edit]

Martinoski was born Nikolache Martin, in 1903 to an Aromanian family in Kuruşova (which at the time was part of the Ottoman Empire).[3] He developed an interest in painting at a young age and attended art classes at the workshop of Dimitar Andonov-Papradinski, an icon painter in Skopje. Prior to 1921 he was constantly on the move. He finally settled down in Bucharest, Romania and attended the Academy of Fine Arts (now known as the Bucharest National University of Arts) from which he graduated in 1927.[1]

Years in Paris[edit]

Martinoski spent two years (1927–1928) in Paris at the Académie de la Grande Chaumière (famous for former students Amedeo Modigliani and Boris Anrep) and the Académie Ranson with artists like the Polish painter Moise Kisling and Roger Bissiere who acted as mentors. This period had affect his way of life and subsequently his style of painting.[1]

Life in Skopje[edit]

Martinoski came back to Skopje with the air of a Parisian gentleman and brimming with avant-garde ideas about art. He developed a very specific expressionistic style and started dealing with social themes rather than portraits. He soon became a member of the Belgrade group Oblik.[4]

His first individual exhibition was in 1929 in Skopje and he continued exhibiting in other cities such as Belgrade, Zagreb and Paris. While he continued drawing, painting, and exhibiting, Martinoski also began creating large wall paintings. Later, he established the Artistic Gallery located in Skopje (now known as the National Gallery of Macedonia) and won numerous awards.[1][4]

Martinoski died on February 7, 1973, at the age of sixty-nine and gave sixty-two of his paintings to Kruševo as a gift. His home in Kruševo is now a gallery, where a small number of his works are exhibited.[5][4]

100 Years of Martinoski's Birth[edit]

In 2003, the National Gallery of Macedonia completed the project "100 years from Martinoski's birth". The exhibition featured paintings never shown publicly before because Martinoski had left 116 of his paintings to his family in a nondescript box. After seeing the paintings, Martinoski's devotees were surprised to find a new, previously-unexplored side of him. These paintings had never before been seen or discussed.[5]

Painting Style[edit]

Many of Martinoski's works were greatly influenced by medieval fresco art and modern Parisian school crisscross. However, his strongest artistic creations were portraits.[2]


  1. ^ a b c d "Life". Nikola Martinoski. Retrieved 3 July 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c "Nikola Martinovski Biography". GRAL Gallery. Retrieved 3 July 2013. 
  3. ^ Destination Avdela 2012, Or Back to the Future a Travelogue, Paul Beza, Fast-Print Publishing, 2013, ISBN 1780356285, p. 37.
  4. ^ a b c Martinovski, Nikola; Borislav Traikovski; Maja Hill; Dimitar Kondovski; Marin O Kocalev; Petar Mazev; Gavril Atanasov (2010). Macedonian Painters. [S.l.]: General Books. ISBN 978-1-157-25436-2. Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  5. ^ a b "Exhibition of Previously Unseen Works by Nikola Martinoski". Culture: Republic of Macedonia. Retrieved 3 July 2013. 

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