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Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague
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ABoT – Artist’s Books on Tour) Artist Competition and Mobile Museum The artist’s book as a distinctive art medium became firmly established on the art scene in the second half of the 20th century. It was intensively explored particularly in the 1960s and 1970s, when it asserted itself in all art forms and movements of the time – the art of the object, visual poetry, and conceptual and action art. The artist’s book gradually assumed a variety of forms and functions, from an independent object in its own right to a component of an artistic action, or as a form of the action’s documentation. The purpose of the Artist’s Book on Tour was not only to introduce this distinct genre to the broad public, but above all to follow its current state and transformations in the era of digital media communication. The catalogue explores fifty artworks that were selected and awarded prizes by an international jury in an eponymous competition, organized by the Museum of Applied Arts (MAK) in Vienna, in partnership with the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague (UPM) and the International Centre of Graphic Arts in Ljubljana. In a competition open to artists from European countries and their creations of the past two years, 925 works were evaluated from 35 countries of Europe.
Prague Fashion Houses, 1900–48) In carefully researched articles and splendid photographs, this publication charts out the history of the most important Prague fashion houses, including those of Hanna Podolská, Oldřich Rosenbaum, Arnoštka Roubíčková, and František Bárta, to illustrate and explain the development of the Czech fashion industry from about 1900 to 1948. It traces the development of tailoring and dressmaking, their change from a craft to an applied art, the expansion of international fashion, and the transformation of tailors and dressmakers into artists and merchants. The publication also relates the extraordinary lives of the owners of these fashion houses against the background of historic events.
Sheila Hicks: Minimes) Sheila Hicks is one of the leading personalities in the history of art who have significantly influenced the field’s development in the second half of the twentieth century. The uniqueness of her works does not consist merely in a free and inventive relationship to traditional textile techniques. In addition to works of often monumental dimensions or purely conceptual character, Sheila Hicks has always pursued experimental weaving of small objects – “minimes” – on a small portable loom.
Antonín Kybal) The main purpose of the book accompanying the exhibition is to provide a basic overview of the greatly varied oeuvre of Antonín Kybal – an accomplished personality in the field of Czech interior textile design and innovator of 20th-century textile design. His creative pursuits and later activities as educator elevated these conservative and declining crafts to an art form in its own right that accorded with the modernist idiom. He imbued the art of textile with a distinctive creative idiom derived from the material’s natural properties, thus liberating it from its previous imitative dependence on the predominant fields of visual culture. The publication examines the individual areas of Kybal’s work, including those overlooked until now (such as his early stage as painter).
Ladislav Sutnar: Americké Venuše / US Venus) The Czech-American designer Ladislav Sutnar [1897—1976] created many internationally-acclaimed design icons. At the age of 65, he delved into painting. The book traces Sutnar’s artwork produced in the United States and the unique artistic career of Sutnar as a painter. Sutnar called these works Venus and exhibited them under the label Joy-Art. In this art manifesto, he formulated his concept of art for the 21st century – as vigorous, humanistic and joyful. His geometric figures rendered in contrasting colours reflect American painting of the time, namely Pop Art.
In Search of Glass/Hledání skla) In recent years a new strong generation of professional glass artists has emerged almost imperceptibly, which in an original way develops the famous tradition of Czech artistic glass. The exhibition to an unprecedented extent features works of 25 youngest representatives of glass art with their creative quest for a new artistic expression and technological possibilities of this sublime material. The exhibition, which takes place within the 2011 Prague Glass Festival, actively responds to the space of the permanent display of the Museum of Decorative Arts – it revives it and provides the exhibited works with unexpected connections.
Glamour. Women's Formal and Evening Wear 1950–2010) The book presents a selection of formal clothing of Czech and foreign provenance, made from 1950 up to the present. The introductory text to its picture supplement examines the overall evolution of formal and evening wear after World War II abroad. It also discusses the specific situation in the field in Czechoslovakia, with an emphasis on fashion clothes created by top Czech designers over the past two decades.
Ladislav Sutnar v textech (Mental Vitamins)) Published by the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague and Kant 2011. editor: Iva Knobloch texts: Iva Knobloch, Ladislav Sutnar edition: Czech, original texts by L. Sutnar in English English translation: Kateřina Pietrasová graphic design: Radim Peško format: 31 x 20 cm, soft cover pages: 272 reproductions: 184 print run: ISBN: 978-80-7101-095-1 price (at the Museum): 690,- CZK Order (cash on delivery): marketing@upm.cz The volume is on sale also in the K.A.V.K.A. bookshop, Krocínova ulice 5, Prague 1 (www.kavkaartbooks.com/cs).
Artěl 1908–1935. Tschechischer Kubismus im Alltag) The German language publication explores one of the most outstanding institutions specializing in Czech applied arts and design during the first half of the 20th century. A variety of wares and designs bearing the prestigious Artěl trademark (ranging in style from late Art Nouveau, through Cubism, to Art Deco) is presented in several sections. Founded in Prague in 1908, Artěl associated prominent figures of the Czech art scene. Initially, it focused on designing and manufacturing "minor art for everyday use" — small functional and decorative items made of wood, ceramic, metal and other materials. Over the years, it extended its activities to include comprehensive designs of interior spaces, both private homes and commercial interiors. An array of diverse views and trends emerged throughout Artěl’s existence, yet all invariably pursued a common goal: to introduce a modern aesthetic outlook into the field of applied arts and to help cultivate household design and the lifestyles of the residents. True in the past and today, Artěl takes its rightful place in Europe’s modern art and design movement, alongside the artistically-inspiring Wiener Werkstätte in Austria and the Bauhaus in Germany.
P. Rada! Paráda!) Pravoslav Rada: Art Ceramics - The booklet presents examples of the playful and highly original work of Pravoslav Rada – a classic of Czech ceramic art. It also includes a card game illustrating selected sculptures of animals and mythical and human figures that brought the artist fame. Besides photographs from the family archive, the publication features reproductions of images of Rada’s sculptures installed in public spaces, many of which he created in collaboration with his wife Jindřiška. Rada’s work is endowed with wit, humorous exaggeration and irony, as well as a certain detachment and pensive wisdom.