At the end of the First World War, Lojze Dolinar, who had been called up and sent to Judenburg in 1917, returned to Ljubljana. In 1920 he spent a few months in New York. He later travelled around Italy and spent some time in Paris. In 1932 he moved to the Yugoslav capital, Belgrade, where in 1949 he was appointed a full professor of sculpture at the Academy of Arts. He became a member of Slovenia’s National Gallery Society in 1920 and his works were among the gallery’s first acquisitions and included in the National Gallery’s inaugural hanging. Ivan Zorman (1889–1969) was the first president of the National Gallery Society and served as the director of the National Gallery until 1950. He remained at the head of the National Gallery for 32 years.
Ivan Zorman had two older sisters and two younger brothers. Anton (“Tone”) Zorman (1893–1917), the youngest of the siblings, studied at the Commercial and Nautical Academy in Trieste. Their father, Janez Zorman, was the founder of an important company trading in wine and provisions. Its success enabled him to provide his four children with a good education. Janez chose his youngest son, Tone, as his successor in the family business, but on 19 April 1917 the young man was killed in action near Pergine Valsugana (in the present-day Italian province of Trento) at the age of just 21.
Shortly after his brother’s death, Ivan Zorman commissioned sculptor Lojze Dolinar to create portraits of Anton Zorman and their mother Marija Zorman (NG P 854), on the basis of a photograph. In the case of the portrait of Anton Zorman, the sculptor placed the subject’s downturned head on a tall pedestal. Anton Zorman’s youthful face expresses sorrow, seriousness and thoughtfulness. The entire sculpture has a soft Art Nouveau line.