Podstrana was the birthplace of one of the greatest Croatian visual artists of the second half of the 20th century, Ante Kaštelančić (Podstrana, 17 August 1911 – Split, 15 April 1989), painter, graphic designer and skilled art educator.
He completed his initial education in art and formed his mature creative expression largely in Split, where he first learned painting from Emanuel Vidović. After this, he studied decorative painting in Munich, and graduated in 1935 from Ljubo Babić’s class at the Academy of Visual Arts in Zagreb. He continued his studies in Paris, to which he would later return twice, while also visiting other cities during his study trips: Milan, Munich, Vienna, London, Prague and Venice.
Although the entirety of the creative output of Ante Kaštelančić, by many considered the most authentic painter of Dalmatia, is today perceived as being dominated by the regional motif of boats and sails painted with strong, static strokes and expressive colours, his works – particularly those created up to the 1960 – also include multiple portraits, nudes, still lifes and paintings inspired by the towns of Orebić, Supetar, Trpanj, thanks to which he is known as one of the most suggestive painters of the Dalmatian landscape. Ante Kaštelančić’s creative passion came together with a talent for pedagogy. He was a devoted art teacher and the founder of the Chair for Visual Arts at the Academy of Pedagogy in Split.
For the hundredth anniversary of his birth, Kaštelančić’s native Podstrana expressed its gratitude to his person with a retrospective of his work in the Gallery of Fine Arts in Split and the Art Pavilion in Zagreb. A plaque was also placed on the wall of his house of birth in Gornja Podstrana during the same year.