Artworks Catalogue

Side altar of Saint Barbara, parish church of Saint John the Baptist (Photo by Croatian Conservation Institute, Goran Tomljenović, 2018)
Sculpture of Saint Lucy (Photo by Croatian Conservation Institute, Goran Tomljenović, 2018)
Sculpture of Saint Apollonia (Photo by Croatian Conservation Institute, Goran Tomljenović, 2018)

Location

Croatia, Sisak-Moslavina County, Gornja Jelenska

Parish church of Saint John the Baptist (Župna crkva sv. Ivana Krstitelja)

Artwork

The side altar of Saint Barbara in the parish church of Saint John the Baptist in Gornja Jelenska

Type

Side altar

Dimensions

Height: 359 cm, width: 185 cm, depth: 80 cm

Inscriptions

  1. 1764/1858/1934/1977 (in the cartouche)
  2. Altare HOC / SUB cura D. PaROChi Petre BVBStiCh Anno / 1778 / PER ELMOSyNAM CAPELLA ERRECTUM ES. PROT Et ALIA DVO / CATHEDRARIA PERPRIVS ID EST IN ANNO 1762 SVB LOCAM / PAROCHO APPOSITA PRAEESTITERUNT PRO GLORIA DEI Et SANCOTUM / Mr Sm honorem (on the high altar, behind the tabernacle)

Critical History

Just like its counterpart the right side altar of Annunciation, the first written record of the newly erected left side altar of Saint Barbara was in the text of the canonical visitation in 1765. 1 Doris Baričević attributed the altar to the workshop or followers of Veit Königer, commenting that sculptures show lower quality. 2
In 2018, however, Martina Ožanić attributed the altar and its sculptures to Franz Anton and his workshop. 3 Due to several layers of repolychromy, and especially due to the last repolychromy of poor aesthetic qualities, it is difficult to discern the details of artistic expression. However, the sculptures of Saint Lucy and Saint Apollonia bear considerable similarities in facial features and costumes to the sculptures of St Catherine and St Barbara (St Elizabeth of Thuringia) on the side altar of Saint Anna in Čučerje, which have been attributed to Franz Anton Straub. Whether they are the work of the master himself or his workshop might be revealed after conservation-restoration works. Lower quality of the sculptures of putti on the attic indicate they were probably carried out by an unknown assistant in the workshop.

Construction / Execution

The side altar of Saint Barbara is situated on the left side of the triumphal arch and is identical to its counterpart, the right side altar of Annunciation. The deep concave architecture of the retable has two pairs of columns standing beside the central painting (unknown painter, 19th century?), and sculptures of Saint Lucy on the left and Saint Apollonia on the right. The attic is built of massive ornamental volutes with a central Maria monogram in glory, and two small adorning putti sitting on both ends of the entablature.

Components

Carpentry
Author: (workshop) Franz Anton Straub
Completed: 1762 – 1764
Patron(s): multiple, parishioners
Technique(s): sawing
Sculpture
Author: (workshop) Franz Anton Straub
Completed: 1762 – 1764
Patron(s): multiple, parishioners
Technique(s): wood carving
Polychromy
Completed: 1764
Technique(s): water gilding, woodgraining
Material(s): gold leaf, red bole
Polychromy
First repolychromy
Completed: 1858
Polychromy
Second repolychromy
Completed: 1934
Polychromy
Third repolychromy
Author: Nada Žagar
Completed: 1977
Material(s): metallic pigment
Polychromy
Third repolychromy
Author: Stjepan Pleše
Completed: 1977
Material(s): metallic pigment
Painting
St Barbara
Completed: ca. 1858
Technique(s): oil on canvas

Comment

The inscriptions in the cartouche (Ins. 1) document the year of altar's execution, as well as the following renovations, the last one being in 1977.

According to the record of the canonical vistation in 1765, it seems that both side altars were originally painted in brown colour (imitating wood) with all of the ornaments gilded, which is unique in Franz Anton's ouvre. The presence of painted walnut woodgrain and gilded areas in the first layer of polychromy was also confirmed by the conservation-restoration investigations.4

Conservation-restoration

2018–2019

Treatment Description

The conservation-restoration investigations were carried out by Karlo Vučković and Mislav Fleck from the private company REST-KON ART d.o.o.

Images

  1. Side altar of Saint Barbara, parish church of Saint John the Baptist (Photo by Croatian Conservation Institute, Goran Tomljenović, 2018)
  2. Sculpture of Saint Lucy (Photo by Croatian Conservation Institute, Goran Tomljenović, 2018)
  3. Sculpture of Saint Apollonia (Photo by Croatian Conservation Institute, Goran Tomljenović, 2018)

Catalogue entry prepared by Martina Ožanić and Ksenija Škarić

Recommended citation: Martina Ožanić and Ksenija Škarić, The side altar of Saint Barbara in the parish church of Saint John the Baptist in Gornja Jelenska, in: TrArS – Tracing the Art of the Straub Family, 2018, (accessed 24/08/2019) URL

Sources and Bibliography

  1. Archives of the Archdiocese of Zagreb, Canonical visitations, Čazma Archdeaconry, protocol 108/IV, 1765
  2. Doris Baričević, Barokno kiparstvo sjeverne Hrvatske, Zagreb, 2008
  3. Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Croatia, Conservation Department in Zagreb, Karlo Vučković, Mislav Fleck (REST-KON ART d.o.o.), Crkva sv. Ivana Krstitelja, Gornja Jelenska, bočni oltar sv. Barbare, dokumentacija o izvršenim istražnim radovima, Samobor, 2019
  4. Martina Ožanić, Altaristika u opusu Franza Antona Strauba na području sjeverne Hrvatske – geneza motiva, utjecaji, odjeci, in: Peristil, 61, Zagreb, Društvo povjesničara umjetnosti Hrvatske, 2018, 65–87

Notes

1 Canonical visitations, Čazma Archdeaconry, protocol 108/IV, 1765, 254–255: "... in corpore arae duae noviter extructae, [...]. Ara 2da est Sanctae Barbarae, consimilis in omnibus priori, exceptis statuis, quarum una Sanctae Luciae, altera Sanctae Apoloniae." (Transcribed by Šime Demo).

2 Doris Baričević, 2008, 371

3 Martina Ožanić, 2018, 79.

4 Karlo Vučković, Mislav Fleck, 2019.