Rudolf Kremlička, Caroling, 1913, watercolor, pencil and gouache on paper, from the collections of the Vysočina Regional Gallery in Jihlava

Carol, carol, Stephen, what are you carrying in the jug… comes to mind to many of us in connection with today. However, the room in the picture witnessed more dignified compositions like "Jesus was born" or "God bless that house."

St. Stephen was the first Christian martyr and is considered an extremely important saint. The first carols are attributed to St. Francis, the founder of the beggar Franciscan Order. Christmas carols are then said to be the oldest songs sung in Czech. At Christmas, they used to carol on Christmas Day, St. Stephen's Day and the Three Kings' Day. The little carolers usually received food and drink, which then enriched the family's holiday board. Sometimes, however - as in the aforementioned joke - the carol ended in failure, or in another stomach.

The work "Koleda" (Caroling) was created by Rudolf Kremlička (June 19, 1886 in Kolín - June 3, 1932 in Prague) a year after his return from his stay in Paris. It dates back to his early period, when he focused mainly on genre scenes and transformed his fresh travel experiences into his own artistic language. The artist's diary reveals that the next two years of "terrible hardship" were not worth a single record. The turning point comes in The Girl in the White Bodice (1915). In the early 1920s, Rudolf Kremliček succeeded in becoming more widely known, even in an international context. His unforgettable nudes, dressing rooms, as well as landscapes and portraits were presented in 2017 by the OGV in Jihlava in cooperation with the KGVU Zlín.


December 26, 2021

deputy of director
MgA. Ilona Staňková
head of expertise department
curator of collection of graphics and sculptures

phone number: 567 217 133