The Maribor-based painter and graphic artist Ivan Kos shaped the Slovenian art scene of the 20th century with his outstanding portraits, self-portraits, landscapes and genre depictions. The balance in colour and composition is characteristic of his works from the 1950s, reflecting his maturity, skill and experience. Drawings and graphics are a constant in Kos’ collected works, and he often found motifs on walks around his home town. From Old Maribor depicts part of the old city centre, possibly a scene from Lent, Maribor’s riverside area. Minute details, always captured in Kos’ graphics, conjure up images of multiple buildings as well as the coachman and road in the foreground and the trees and sky in the background. The typically realistic features of his graphic art are combined with the expressionistic influence of Božidar Jakac, which is noticeable in the sudden narrowing of the road and the expressive shape of the sky. By using shading and perspective techniques, Kos achieved a sense of depth of space, and the naturalistically depicted buildings are stylistically reminiscent of the vedutas of his contemporary Pipo Peteln. In spite of Kos’ many years of experience in graphic art and his awareness that the imprint will produce a mirror image of the matrix, both his signature and the number 9 in the lower left corner are reversed (vI instead of Iv).
(Sara Dobrajc, in the framework of the Creative Path to Knowledge project, Virtual Legends; The investment is co-financed by the Republic of Slovenia and the European Union from the European Social Fund)