Ars: časopis Ústavu Dejín Umenia Slovenskej Akadémie Vied — 3.1969

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of Slovakia representing quite often and with
signiíicant international successes the Creative
and bursting potentiality of the nation.
Knowingly or unknowingly, in their individual
starts, some of them seemingly are picking-up
(naturally, only in a certain degree of way) that
expressionistic patli of présentation, to whicli patli,
the outline almost a half Century ago was laid
down by Benka's initiation and start. No wonder.
Because in the 30-ties and 40-ties around Benka's
strong personality, even more dosely was standing
a group of teniporary followers even in stylization,
to mention some of them, as the rapsodie and
dreamingly lyric Miloš A. Bazovský, the enter-
prizingly versatile Janko Alexy, the illustrative and
calm Karol Ondreička and otliers. But in those
years. of transition as a polyphonie flair was
emanating the personality of Martin Benka
progressively preferring the growing hgural, human
element in his compositions. The heroized Slovák
common man came doser and doser, labouriously
stepping on the end in the hrst plane of the
composition on canvases or murais and sgraphitos,
spared-ont in polychromie layers of plaster.
The artistic endeavour and assiduous labor of
Benka was in the end of 40-ties and in 50-ties of
our era, crowned with libération and almost
apothetical élévation of the Slovák man itself-and

Martin Benka
Autor spomína na svoje prvé dotyky s Benkovým
dielom: keď uzřel jeho obraz Na liptovských holiach
roku 1923 v Lučenci, ako sa neskôr zblížil s umelcom
osobné v Prahe, ako napísal prvý náčrt jeho monograhe
roku 1931 a neskôr vydal jeho knižný prohl zásluhou
Rudolfa Klačka roku 1935.
Zdroje Benkovej tvorby sleduje z híbok národných
dějin. Připomíná osudy Slovenska z čias raného středo-
věku, načrtává situáciu v karpatskej kotlině v neskorších
storočiach až po slovenské národné obrodenie a oslobo-
denecké hnutie.
Benka je v autorovej interpretácii prvá velká postava

not merely by the symbolical, older appréciation
of the landscape. To the highest degree of hommage
extended through the means of art in admiration
of that enormous, healthy endurance and human
greatness of his ethnos, the Slovák nation in
general, which lead this people from a deeper
debasement — than the insular Irish — on the sunny
slopes of libération and equality among the
nations of the World, a nation of chronic thurst,
a tenacious longing, aft-er the freedom and Self-
government or always ready to shake down —
,,volens et potens" — any tyrannie approach or
despotism of not populär rule, whaťs so more
any falše vasalage.
This imminent rejuvenating potentiality,-inborn
also in the youngest génération of Slovák artists
and art and vigorously growing and expanding
before the eyes of the path-breaking pioneer
Benka, the octogenerian, as we were and are
personally and in mutual agreement convinced
(on the ,,Expo 67" in Montreal Canada meeting
after an almost quarter Century with him) is the
greatest guarantee of uncessant évolution of the
Slovák hne arts. From far and distant view of
ours, this phenomenon is even more bold and
evident. The Slovaks háve what to say also to the
mankind — by means of hne arts, — as Benka
did for the — start.

moderného slovenského umenia, ako tvorca národného
expresionizmu. Liči jeho po vod zo záhorského Kiripolca,
jeho typickú výtvarnú tematiku a štýlovo-obsahové
vlastnosti jeho monumentalizačného maliarskeho úsilia,
ktoré málo taký plodný ohlas medzi mladšími slovenskými
výtvarníkmi a nie je bez ozvěny ani v súčasnej mladej gene-
rácii. Preto s dojatím spomína na stretnutie s Benkom tak-
mer po štvrtstoročí na EXPO 67 v Montreale. Toto časové
intermezzo však nič nezměnilo na ich vztahu, ani na
autorovom hodnotení Benkovho diela, ktoré patří
k pilierom slovenskej kultury aj v reláciách medzi-
národných.

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