(b. 1872, Popovice u Berouna, d. 1918, Praha)
Czech painter. He studied at the School of Applied Arts in Prague (1887-95). In 1906 he visited Belgium, the Netherlands and Paris. He taught at the Academy of Arts in Prague from 1913. He was a pioneer in modern Bohemian art, and his work developed from pure Art Nouveau and Symbolism towards Expressionism, in three phases.
The period 1887-1900 is represented by the triptych Spring (1900; Prague, Trade Fair Palace): with its lack of scales of tonal value or Impressionist instantaneousness, it is a skilful use of colour and composition. The figure of the boy with autobiographical features is symbolic of a whole generation. The period 1901-7 culminated in Painting from a Bigger Cycle (1901-2; Prague, Trade Fair Palace), which balances vertical and horizontal lines and employs bright colour combinations. In Black Lake (1904; Prague, Trade Fair Palace), which deals with the misery and excitement of first love, the contrast of black and white and the figure of the boy with a horse and a girl evoke the transitive moment between reality and dream. Spring (1906; Prague, Trade Fair Palace), a testament to Preisler's admiration for the work of Gauguin, develops the resonant contrast of green, yellow and white.
In 1908-18 Preisler returned to monumental decoration: of the Palacky Room in the Municipal House in Prague, 1910-12, in the style of Puvis de Chavannes. At this time he was approaching the Expressionism of the younger generation from The Eight, especially in the three versions of the painting Good Samaritan (1910-13; all private collection), which shows the influence of Daumier and Munch.