In 1717 Bistrica Castle was bought by Ignaz Maria Count Attems and was rearranged into a Baroque residence. Painter Franz Ignaz Flurer (1688–1742) painted the chapel, grand staircase and great hall by 1721. We do actually know Flurer as a superior fresco painter who worked for Count Attems also in his other castles in Brežice and Podčetrtek. However, the painter is less known for his exceptional veduta landscapes, which he also painted for his patron Attems. The longstanding bond between patron and painter lasted up till the patron's death in 1732, and during this time an extensive oeuvre of vedute was produced, of which only a part is now on show at Bistrica Castle. Numerous of Flurer’s works in the fresco and oil techniques are stored in Austrian Styria, given that Flurer painted in Graz until his death.
An important chapter in Flurer’s painting are landscapes, which were mainly produced for his sponsor and patron Count Attems. Embracing the views of colourful panoramas embodied by light and heavenly breadths, a mountainous and picturesque landscape with mighty cliffs predominates. The essential component is water, which gives these landscapes the rhythm of life. The staffage figures merely make up a part of the depicted idyll and given their actions and gestures only represent a snippet of the events taking place in the animated space. This is a world of Baroque fantasy, where the artist is not concerned by a topographically represented veduta, but only by the fantastically depicted landscapes, which are really, without a great narrative, merely exaggerated capricci.
All of Flurer's vedute known on Slovenian territory are on show at Bistrica Castle for the first time. The exhibition is a congenial bond between Flurer's painting and his patron Count Attems. This is why these Baroque images address the visitor with an invitation on behalf of the patron and his painter to experience the ripe age of the Styrian Baroque at Bistrica Castle.
Selection of exhibits
Set-up of the exhibition
Institute for Culture Slovenska Bistrica: Viktor Ajd, Silvo Huso
National Gallery of Slovenia: Ivan Pirnovar, Ferdinand Šerbelj
Selection of visual material
Franz Ignaz Flurer, Baroque Fresco and Landscape Painter
Zavod za kulturo Slovenska Bistrica, represented by Herta Žagar
in collaboration with
National Gallery of Slovenia
Text author and editor
Marjan Smerke, Janko Dermastja
The artworks were loaned by:
Bela Krajina Museum, Metlika; Institute for Culture Slovenska Bistrica; National Gallery of Slovenia ; National Museum of Slovenia; Maribor Regional Museum; Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts, Ljubljana
30 May–26 October 2008
Tuesday–Friday: from 9 am–5 pm
Saturday: from 11 am–3 pm
Sunday: 2 pm–4 pm