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SKU: C0434 Category:


Decision is a get well card that features an illustration of three women with headscarves sitting together looking concerned. One is saying ‘That’s agreed then, we’ll send this get well card’

The Artwork is by Jekabs Kazaks, and the faces and the demeanour of the characters cried out for a slightly humorous twist, That said, Kazak’s short life was anything but lighthearted. Rather it was full of sympathies against a background of war and revolution.

Jekabs Kazaks was Latvian. He was born poor and struggled to finish high school. From 1913 to 1915, he studied at the Riga Art School under Vilhelms Purvītis and Roberts Tillbergs. During World War I, from 1915 to 1917, he attended the Penza Art School. Like many Latvian modernists, his artistic training and choice of subjects were influenced by war. Specifically, his experiences as a refugee during World War One formed his views and his subject matter.

Kazaks’ style contained elements of Impressionism, Western European Old Masters, modern French painters, and early 20th-century Latvian Modernism. Additionally, he was inspired by the series of paintings by his fellow countryman Jazeps Grosvalds. He brought his own painter’s sensitivity to these themes, focusing on the human condition.

The Political Background To Kazaks Life

Born in 1895, Kazaks died in 1920 of natural causes at only twenty-five years old. The political backdrop of his life included Latvia’s declaration of independence on November 18, 1918, following the Russian Revolution of 1917. After a period of conflict, the new nation was recognized by Soviet Russia and Germany in 1920.

Kazaks used his influences and interests to develop a personal style characterized by expressiveness, simplicity, synthesis, and distortion of forms. In 1919, he was involved in forming the Expressionists’ Group. He later became the theoretician and first chairman of the Riga Artists’ Group.

Many of his major works portray the everyday life of refugees, reflecting the political turmoil of his time. He also painted portraits and self-portraits. His medium was conditional color pattern in oil and watercolor, which he enhanced with various graphic techniques such as Indian ink, pencil and chalk drawing, linocut, and woodcut. Over forty of his oil paintings and around one hundred and fifty of his watercolors and drawings are exhibited at the Latvian State Museum of Art.


SKU: C0434

Decision - an illustration of three women with headscarves sitting together looking concerned and one is saying 'That's agreed then, we'll send this get well card' Artwork by Jekabs Kazaks