Strahov Picture Gallery
The picture gallery of the Premonstrates’ monastery at Strahov presents significant pieces of graphic art of the 14th – 19th centuries, installed in beautiful interiors of the Strahov monastery, in a specially arranged upper cloister of the heavenly yard. As early as in the 18th century, the Premonstrates’ monastery owned valuable collections of arts. In 1836, Abbot Jeroným Josef Zeidler established a monastery picture gallery from them, which then kept growing until 1950, when the entire monastery was abolished by the communist regime, and the precious pieces of art were dispersed in galleries and collections of other institutions. November 1989 brought about restitution of the church property, which allowed for the return of the precious collections to the Strahov monastery. The collection was renewed, a new exposition was arranged, and it was presented to public in the Strahov Picture Gallery in 1993. The public can admire 99 top quality paintings and sculptures of the collection on the first floor of the monastery’s cloister.
It is one of the most precious monastery collections in the central Europe. There are complete sets of Bohemian and Mid-European Gothic paintings and sculptures (Strahov Madonna from around 1340, St. Barbora of Strahov, around 1410, Strahov altar by the Master of Litoměřice altar, and others). There are pieces from the Rudolphinian painting schools (B. Spranger, J. Heintz), works of Bohemian and Mid-European Baroque (J. J. Hering, K. Škréta, P. Brandl), Rococo paintings, as well as paintings from prominent Bohemian painters from the beginning of the 19th century (L. Kohl, F. X. Procházka). Dutch, Flemish and Italian paintings of the 17th and 18th centuries are also represented here.
The most famous painting in the collection is the Feast of the Rose Garlands by Albrecth Dürer, which the monastery purchased in 1793 and kept on display until 1934, from which date on it has been on display in the National Gallery. The visitors can see a copy of the Feast of the Rose Garlands, acquired in the years 1840 – 1841 during the restoration of Dürer’s original.
The collection also includes a large collection of graphic and arts-and-crafts objects, mostly liturgical, from the period between the 14th and the 19th centuries. Among the most precious, there are two Gothic relics desks from the beginning of the 14th century – precious demonstrations of Gothic gold-smithery.