Umělecká beseda was founded in spring 1863 as the first association of Czech artists. The art society supported the development of the arts through exhibitions, concerts, lectures and publishing activities. The first two decades of its existence were also closely linked with the idea of establishing the National Theatre. František Ženíšek, who at the time held the post of vice−chairman of its art division, created this representative Commemorative Certificate on the occasion of the society’s twenty years in existence, which was later published in the form of a premium. The composition’s central figure is the winged Genius, raising three laurel wreaths symbolizing Beseda’s three divisions – those of Literature, The Visual Arts and Music. Their attributes are depicted on the shield held in the his other hand. The other figures represent the individual fields of art. Standing to the left is Music playing the violin, Poetry holding a lyre is seen to the right, and the Visual Arts in the lower section is personified by the female figure of Architecture and two putti – one representing Painting and the other Sculpture.