|About the museum:
At the end of 1918, the commission for religion and teaching issued an order to found a print collection in the University Library, and on October 28, 1918, a session of a committee was held to consider how to implement the recommendation. After the proposal had been adopted, on December 18, 1919, a government order was issued, publishing the Statutes of the newly founded Print Collection. The first manager of the collection was appointed on May 21, 1919, Dr Artur Schneider, professor of art history at the Faculty of Philosophy in Zagreb. According to the statutes, the collection contains both prints and original drawings. After the foundation of the Print Collection, the prints and drawings that had been accumulated in the library over the course of time became part of its classified holdings. Among these, particular attention needs to be paid to the 79 drawings of the well-known Austrian Baroque architect Johann Bernhard Fischer von Erlach (Graz, 1656 – Vienna, 1723), in which he reconstructed the well known buildings of the world, of all periods. Included among the well known world buildings is Diocletian’s Palace in Split. Fischer von Erlach made this series of drawings for his work “Entwurf einer historischen Architektur”, Vienna, 1721. Another valuable feature of the collection consists of the drawings and prints of contemporary and old masters, in which we ought to lay a special emphasis on those that have historical importance, like the coloured woodcut of the Battle of Sisak of June 22, 1593. Of the Croatian artists who were famed and well received outside the borders of their own country and whose works are kept in the collection, Juraj Julije Klović, famed miniaturist, called by many the Michelangelo of the miniature and Martin Rota Kolunić and Andrija Medulić Schiavone, certainly need special mention. There is hardly a Croatian painter that is not represented in the collection by at least one work; however, we shall particularly mention those works of Croatian and foreign artists who have achieved particular prominence, because of the overall artistic oeuvre of a given painter, as well as works that are important for documentary and culture studies reasons. Certainly worth bringing out are the many drawings and prints that represent the founders of the collection, Menci Clement Crnčić, Tomislav Krizman, Branko Šenoa and Ljubo Babić. Some of the greats of world art like Rembrandt Harmensz van Rijn, George Grosz, Oskar Kokoschka and Käthe Kollwitz are also represented in the collection by their works. We should not overlook an important means of artistic expression, the comic strip. The best known such artist in Croatia, Andrija Maurović, can stand side by side with the greatest names of world comic strips. The collection keeps the biggest and most complete collection of this cartoonist. Since 1960, the Print Collection has included in its holdings postcards, illustrated posters and book dust jackets in its holdings alongside drawings and prints. Very soon after the first originally illustrated books were created, the origin of which we owe to that promoter of modern art the Parisian art dealer Ambroise Vollard, in the second decade of the 20th century, Croatia saw its first print portfolios, of which we would highlight Album of the Spring Salon of 1921. In 1921 Vilko Gecan appeared with the “Captivity on Sicily” album. In 1932 a print album of linocuts by Marijan Detoni was issued – “People from the Seine”. The Print Collection also contains the famous wartime album “Jama” or The Pit produced by the two artists Edo Murtić and Zlatko Prica. The collection also holds the entire publishing activity of the Biškupić Collection, which contains more than a hundred specimens of print albums created in a period of some thirty years. The Print Collection also has an extensive reference library of specialised literature, without which it would be inconceivable to study the visual material; the collection also has a systematic programme for the acquisition of new and updated reference works from the general area of the fine arts and architecture.