Still Lifes from the Nedbalka Gallery´s Collection

“Just as trivial words may provide the text for a beautiful song, so trivial objects can make a perfect picture.“ E. H. Gombrich

The Nedbalka Gallery mounts several exhibitions a year, through which it presents to the broad public works from its collections that have not been included in the permanent exposition. The current exhibition offers a view of the genre of still life in the context of modern Slovak art. It presents the works by artists who significantly contributed to the development of art in Slovakia in the twentieth century and influenced the next generations of artists.

As we learn from literary sources, the history of still life dates back to ancient Greece. In Greek, still life was first called rhypography or rhopography, which means the depiction of insignificant objects, of odds and ends, with the latter term also having mocking denotations. Compared to other art genres, still life was long considered lowly because it ‘only’ requires technical skills and often slides into decorativism. Yet, still life allows an artist much freedom to experiment with the arrangement of elements within a composition of the painting. The artists can arrange and light the objects as they want, and besides, their works do not depend on the sitter´s patience. Although at first glance it may seem that still life is purely descriptive, it also reflects the social and historical context and is used by the artists to cope with spiritual problems. In this case, still lifes take on a symbolic aspect.

The works on view present the work of twelve artists. They are all unique, yet influenced by the broader European and narrower Central European context. The exhibition shows the development of twentieth-century modern Slovak art through the specific art genre.


Some things you can enjoy only live


  • Galéria Nedbalka, n. o.
    Nedbalova ulica 17
    811 01 Bratislava
    tel.: +421 2 20 76 60 31

Opening hours

  • Open daily
  • except Mondays
  • 13.00 – 19.00
  • Open