The Moments of Life by Vincenty Smokowski

Album of 22 drawings

By Lithuanian Art Fund

Wincenty Smokowski (Vincentas Smakauskas, 1797 — 1876), was a Lithuanian-Polish painter and illustrator in the Academic and Classical styles

Children and a beggar (mid-19th century) by Vincentas SmakauskasLithuanian Art Fund

The album of 22 sketches in Indian ink (some signed by the artist: Wincenty Smokowski fecit), supplements the substantial yet still insufficiently recognised artistic legacy of Wincenty Smokowski.

Meeting with the mother (mid-19th century) by Vincentas SmakauskasLithuanian Art Fund

The precise dates on which the works were created are unknown, but they were most likely produced in the late period of the artist‘s career, that is, after 1858, while he was living at the wife‘s manor in Krikonys and Vilnius.

Conversation (mid-19th century) by Vincentas SmakauskasLithuanian Art Fund

Grief (mid-19th century) by Vincentas SmakauskasLithuanian Art Fund

Sacrifice for beggar (mid-19th century) by Vincentas SmakauskasLithuanian Art Fund

Mischievous children (mid-19th century) by Vincentas SmakauskasLithuanian Art Fund

Walking with children (mid-19th century) by Vincentas SmakauskasLithuanian Art Fund

In many of this album‘s works, children are the major actors. Smokowski liked to draw them in various situations, spending time with their parents or other children. 

Peasant talk (mid-19th century) by Vincentas SmakauskasLithuanian Art Fund

Rest (mid-19th century) by Vincentas SmakauskasLithuanian Art Fund

As was often the case for this artist, only figures are portrayed, but sometimes the surroundings are also shown.

A bedtime story (mid-19th century) by Vincentas SmakauskasLithuanian Art Fund

There is an especially heart-warming drawing, in which we see an elderly woman sitting in an armchair in a cosy room, telling a story to a child lying on a sofa.

The girl and the beggar (mid-19th century) by Vincentas SmakauskasLithuanian Art Fund

The composition of a blind beggar with a child in a church calls to mind one of Smokowski’s painting with the same theme, only in the painting the figures are seen in a landscape.

Meeting of nobles (mid-19th century) by Vincentas SmakauskasLithuanian Art Fund

Ladies' afternoon with children (mid-19th century) by Vincentas SmakauskasLithuanian Art Fund

Carriage trip (mid-19th century) by Vincentas SmakauskasLithuanian Art Fund

Wolf hunting (mid-19th century) by Vincentas SmakauskasLithuanian Art Fund

Domestic scene (Children and nannies) (mid-19th century) by Vincentas SmakauskasLithuanian Art Fund

Mother and daughter (mid-19th century) by Vincentas SmakauskasLithuanian Art Fund

Domestic scene (noble family) (mid-19th century) by Vincentas SmakauskasLithuanian Art Fund

Presentation to the public (mid-19th century) by Vincentas SmakauskasLithuanian Art Fund

Beggar (mid-19th century) by Vincentas SmakauskasLithuanian Art Fund

Peasants after fun (mid-19th century) by Vincentas SmakauskasLithuanian Art Fund

These several sheets from the 19th century everyday life of the lesser nobility, in which we see strangers yet the moments of their lives captured by the artists are instantly familiar to us connect us with a bygone time, with a history that is not recorded in our textbooks.

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