The gathered were greeted by Diana Vukušić, the president of the Federation of Croatian Associations of Sweden. On hand to speak of the artist were Elizabeta Glasnović Raguž, Ljerka Galic, and Vladimir Rozijan.
Strolling through town following a visit to an exhibition on the passenger liner Titanic – which included thirty Croatians among its passengers in 1912 – I saw a notice on a large electronic display of the opening of an exhibition featuring Croatian painter Kristian Kreković.
The gathered at Malmö’s Europaporten on the 20th of October were greeted by Diana Vukušić, the president of the Federation of Croatian Associations of Sweden. On hand to speak of Kristian Kreković, an artist in the truest sense of the word, were Elizabeta Glasnović Raguž, who helped find the paintings held in private collections, Ljerka Galic, the head of the emigrant heritage department at the Croatian Heritage Foundation, and Vladimir Rozijan, who knew the artist personally. The exhibition was declared officially open by Croatian Ambassador Anica Djamić.
The exhibition showcases eleven portraits and two landscapes. It was an exceptional opportunity to see the portraits held in the private collections of the inheritors of the works.
A “pintor croata-peruana” as he called himself, Kreković was both a painter and an architect. Born on the Bosna River in the village of Koprivna, he moved to Maglaj and then to Tuzla, where he worked as a pianist, violinist and conductor. He was also a loving son. He graduated painting in Vienna in 1925. Three years later he was a member of a French society of artists. That same year he won a gold medal and public recognition of his work at an international art exhibition in Bordeaux. He visited Peru on several occasions up to 1966, finding inspiration for his work among the people there.
A street in Tuzla is named after him, as is a gallery in the local Franciscan monastery and a museum and park in Palma de Mallorca.
By: Vlatka Glasnović
1. Diana Vukušić, the president of the Federation of Croatian Associations of Sweden
2. Ljerka Galic with a Kreković landscape
3. The heirs of the Shmitz family
4. Ljerka Galic, the head of the emigrant heritage department at the Croatian Heritage Foundation, views the exhibited portraits
5. Exhibition coordinator and organiser Elizabeta Glasnović Raguž
6. The exhibition was opened by Croatian Ambassador Anica Djamić