Branislav Dešković

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Branislav Dešković
Born(1883-03-11)11 March 1883
Died20 August 1939(1939-08-20) (aged 56)
EducationVenice, Vienna, Paris
Known forsculpture

Branislav Dešković (1883–1939) was a Croatian sculptor, best known for his expressive animal sculptures, especially his hunting dogs. He is considered the first Impressionist sculptor in Croatia.[1]


Branislav Dešković was born in Pučišća on the island of Brač, on 11 March 1883. He trained in Venice, Vienna and Paris, where he regularly exhibited at the Salon.[1] A contemporary review of the first Dalmatian Art Exhibition of 1908 in The Studio (magazine) said "Branislav Deskovic's mastership in animal sculpture was proved by his works The Draught Horse, The Ass, and The Dog. Two Old Ones is the best of all his compositions, and has been exhibited in the "Salon" of Paris, where it gained much approbation."[2]

In the summer of 1910, Dešković spent time in Sarajevo. There he was attracted by the Bosnian figures, and later showed a number of outstanding sculptures for example Two Elders, and Bust of a Turk. He was an avid hunter, and this was reflected in his artistic work. He is best known for his animal sculptures, particularly hunting dogs.[1] During a stay in Sarajevo in 1910, he was inspired by Bosnian figures, which showed in several of his sculptures.[1]

He exhibited with the Medulić group in 1908 in Split, 1909 in Ljubljana, and 1910 in Zagreb. He held his first solo exhibit in 1910 in Sarajevo.

During the First World War, he volunteered in Montenegro, and later in Rome, Geneva and Paris. From 1921 he lived in Split.

The art gallery in Bol, on Brač, the Galerija umjetnina "Branislav Dešković is named after him, and much of his work is on display there.

He died in Zagreb on 20 August 1939.


Although Pučišča and Brač have a long history of stone-working, Dešković chose bronze as his medium. He worked in stone, clay and bronze, and is considered the first Impressionist Croatian sculptor.[1]

Dešković is best known for his animal sculptures. A keen hunter in his youth, he portrayed hounds from his memory of working with the animals, in an expressive impressionist style. He also produced some fine portraits and a few large, heroic sculptures.[3] Carried along by the motto of the Zagreb exhibition "Despite Unheroic Times", Dešković created the monumental sculptures Prince Marko (Kraljević Marko), and Victory of Freedom (Pobjeda slobode), which were unusual expressions of his political views.[1] Unfortunately his career was cut short by illness, and his collection of works is not extensive.

HRT, Croatian Radio/Television featured Branislav Dešković in the program segment than can be seen here (in Croatian): HRT Video:Kipar Branislav Dešković


Examples of his work can be seen online at Galerija Remek-Djela[1]

  • Two Old Men/Two Elders (Dva starca)
  • Draught Horse (Tegleći konj)
  • Rest (Odmor)[4]
  • Scratching Dog (Pas koji se češe)
  • Bust of a Turk (Poprsje Turčina)
  • Prince Marko (Kraljević Marko)
  • Victory of Freedom (Pobjeda slobode)


During his lifetime, he exhibited in Split, Zagreb and Ljubljana

Solo Exhibitions[edit]

Recent exhibitions of his work include:

Public Collections[edit]

His work can be found in the following public collections




  1. ^ a b c d e f g "Branislav Dešković". Artists. Remek Djela. Archived from the original on 22 March 2012. Retrieved 27 June 2011.
  2. ^ "Studio-Talk". The Studio, Volume 46, Issue 192. March 1909. Design Research Publications, UK. Retrieved 27 June 2011.
  3. ^ "Famous people: Branislav Dešković". Brac. In Your Pocket. Archived from the original on 19 March 2012. Retrieved 27 June 2011.
  4. ^ "The collection of Croatian sculpture from the 19th to the 21st century: Building II 1st Floor Room 6". Gliptoteka. Croatian Academy of Sciences and Art. Retrieved 26 June 2011.
  5. ^ "Izložba Branislav Dešković U Salonu Galerije AA" [Branislav Dešković Exhibition in the Salon of Gallery Antun Augustinčić] (in Croatian). Grad Klanjec. Retrieved 27 June 2011.
  6. ^ a b "Branislav Dešković 1883–1939, HR". Retrieved 27 June 2011.
  7. ^ "The collection of Croatian sculpture from the 19th to the 21st century". Gliptoteka. Croatian Academy of Sciences and Art. Retrieved 26 June 2011. Branislav Dešković (1883–1939), our best known sculptor of animal forms, is represented by figures of pointers and portraits that are characterised by an Impressionist treatment of surface.
  8. ^ "19th Century and Modern Art". Collections. Galerija Umjetnina Split. Archived from the original on 5 October 2011. Retrieved 24 June 2011.
  9. ^ "Galerija umjetnina Branislav Dešković". MDC Museum Documentation Centre. Retrieved 24 June 2011.
  10. ^ "The Victory of Liberty 1885–1919 Branko Deskovic". Collections. Smithsonian American Art Museum. Retrieved 27 June 2011.


  • Posmrtna izložba Branimira Deškovića Author:Cvito Fisković. Published by Hrvatsko društvo umjetnosti, Podružnica Split 1990
  • Branislav Dešković Author:Duško Kečkemet. Publisher: Supetar : Brački zbornik ; Zagreb : Grafički zavod Hrvatske, 1977