Julius Mařák is famed as a painter, draughtsman and graphic artist, who specialized in woodland themes. In the 1860s, he began to paint his first romantic compositions, in which the realistically rendered life in nature assumed a new poetic and symbolic meaning. The first public success of this tendency in Mařák’s work was the large charcoal drawing called Also Congress, or Congress under the Elms, exhibited in 1866 at the exhibition of the Viennese Kunstverein. The charcoal drawing received public recognition not only for its artistic qualities and poetic impact, but also the meaning of its content expressed in the title, which ironized the ongoing political deliberations in the course of the Prussian−Austrian War. The drawing was purchased by the Duke of Coburg and Mařák was commissioned by the Viennese branch of the Artistic Unity association to execute the composition in oil. The result is the painting The Storks’ Assembly, for which Mařák won the Gold Medal at the World’s Fair in Vienna in 1873.