Avgust Černigoj was born on 24 August 1898 in Trieste. After leaving art college in Trieste, he graduated from the Bologna Academy and went on to study at the Munich Academy and was the only Slovenian artist at the famous Bauhaus School in Weimar.
After finishing his studies, he returned to Ljubljana and then went back to Trieste. From 1920 to 1921 he taught drawing in Postojna. After his return from Bauhaus he became a professor at the Secondary Technical School in Ljubljana from 1923 to 1925. In 1927 he settled in Trieste where he made a living by working part-time painting decorations on ships until 1936. During World War II he painted churches. After the war, until 1970, he taught drawing at the Slovenian Technical and Vocational Secondary School and at the Teachers’ College in Trieste. He spent the last five years of his life in Lipica. He died on 17 November 1985 in Sežana, where he is buried.
The collection in the Gallery of August Černigoj in Lipica consists of over 1,400 works of art. About 400 works, currently on display, give an overview of Černigoj’s body of artistic work and represent the themes he explored in his creative period which spans over sixty years. A significant part of his oeuvre is graphic works, ranging from woodcuts, linocuts, copperplates, dry points and aquatints. His motives include figural representations, objects and pure abstract works. He combined various elements and symbols and carved them into small formats. He was faithful to Constructivism and its principles which became his main direction after he completed his studies in the renowned Bauhaus School in Weimar.
Černigoj was given the recognition he deserved from the very beginning when his own gallery was opened. It is beyond doubt that Avgust Černigoj made a significant and invaluable contribution to the history of the Slovenian fine arts movement and was one of the leading figures of the Slovenian historical avant-garde owing to his personality and works of art.