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A bridge in the Pyrenees

Author: Hiacynt Alchimovicz (1841–1916)
Dimensions:24 × 39 cm

bottom right: H. Alchimowicz / 1906

The beginning of the career of Hiacynt Alchimowicz (18411916) was closely connected to Vilnius. He is thought to have received his early instruction in art at the Vilnius Gymnasium, and later at the Vilnius Land Surveyors School. Alchimowicz probably learned painting under Kanuty Rusiecki. After the defeat of the 1863 uprising, he emigrated to France together with his brother Kazimierz, and settled in the south, in Perpignan, the capital of the Roussillon region. In 1872 he took up his studies of painting again. After several years in Paris, Alchimowicz taught painting at Perpignan Lyceum and other schools in the city from 1876. He took part in exhibitions in France, and his work repeatedly won medals. He also sent work to be exhibited in Poland.
Unlike his brother, Hiacynt did not pay much attention to Lithuanian history or mythology; he is mainly known as a painter of French landscapes and domestic scenes. He painted the rocky Pyrenees, spanned by old bridges, many times. One such detail is also captured in his watercolour from 1906. The landscape was painted from nature, but the counterpoint of the rocks shaped by nature and the arch of the bridge built by man bears a symbolic connotation, inviting us to reflect on the meaning of the relationship between nature and culture, and on divine and human creation.

Text author Rūta Janonienė

Source: Valiunas Ellex (LAWIN until 2015) art album: RES PUBLICA (2018). Compiler and author Rūta Janonienė