In 1894, Alojz Gangl sculpted a bust of a poet Josip Stritar in the latter’s villa in Vienna. This picturesque and dynamic work, which pleased Stritar greatly, boldly approaches modernist trends.
In the year it was created, Stritar, who did not spare praise for Gangl’s work, wrote in Ljubljanski zvon: “Mr Alojzij Gangl – I want to say a few words about this man after this long preface – Gangl is not a craftsman, nor a self-taught man; he is a true artist, educated in the best school at the Vienna Academy. He is an artist from head to toe; suffice to talk to him and watch him look at someone, as if to say: ‘How would I do this one?’ And when his mouth speaks, his eye also speaks and his hand speaks! Gangl is quite renowned, as I am well aware; he does not need my publicity; his Vodnik in Ljubljana, in particular, speaks for him, as do the beautiful sculptures on the theatre in Ljubljana. I think I may also publicly express my joy that we Slovenes have such a virtuous artist, especially in a profession which has hitherto been a stepchild – but no reproaches! I am not very generous with the adjective ‘genius’ – it should be reserved, I think, for special occasions, so it doesn’t wear out and lose its value. However, in this case I think this adjective would not go amiss.”
In 1929, the sculptor celebrated his 70th anniversary, and at that time he sought to sell the bust of Josip Stritar. On the 100th anniversary of Stritar’s birth, the statue was offered to the cultural committee of the municipal government. Most likely, the purchase was finally made by the Ban (governor) of the Drava Banovina and former mayor Dinko Puc.