100 Percent Glass. Glassmaking School in Železný Brod 1920—2010)
In 2010, the glass school in Železný Brod celebrates its 90th anniversary. On this occasion, it has prepared in partnership with the Museum a publication abounding in lively colours, shapes and glass fantasy. Contemporary works created by the school’s students are shown in interaction with outstanding creations from the early years of the institution’s existence, designed by its instructors Alois Metelák, Jaroslav Brychta, Oldřich Žák, Ladislav Přenosil, Zdeněk Juna, and others. It features an extensive and variegated collection of glass vases, dishes, figurines, jewellery and objects executed in every imaginable technique that blends exquisite craftsmanship with inventive creativity. The publication traces the school‘s path toward the world recognition of Czech modern glass, ranging from Art Deco to the latest artistic concepts realized in this noble material. Furthermore, it indicates that the future of Czech glassmaking as a treasured national heirloom rests not only in the preservation of its tradition, but above all in the further enhancement of the internationally unique system of specialized glass education and training.
The book was issued by the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague in collaboration with the High School of Applied Art for Glassmaking in Železný Brod to accompany the exhibition held in the Museum from June 17th to September 19th, 2010. 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. Afons Mucha: Český mistr Belle Epoque/Czech Master fo the Belle Epoque)
Afons Mucha: A szecesszió cseh mestere/Czech Master of the Art Nouveau
The catalogue was published to accompany an exhibtion that was held as part of the 2009 Spring Cultural Festival in Budapest. The exhibition featured fine examples of Mucha’s posters, paintings, drawings and photographs from his Parisian, American and Czech periods. It was co-organised by the Moravian Gallery, Brno, the Museum of Fine Arts, Budapest, the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague and the Mucha Foundation. Alfon Mucha. The Pavilion of Bosnia and Herzegovina at the Exposition Universelle Paris 1900)
Paviljon Bosne i Hercegovine na Svjetskoj izložbi u Parizu 1900. Rodine
This book was published by the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague in collaboration with The Luka Praha Association under the auspices of the Embassy of Bosnia and Herzegovina in the Czech Republic. 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). Artěl 1908–1935)
Tsjechisch kubisme in het dagelijks leven / Czech Cubism in Daily Life
The booklet was published by Design museum Gent in collaboration with the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, to accompany the exhibition of the same name, held in Gent from October 28, 2009 through February 7, 2010. 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. Artěl. Art d’ús diari/Arte de uso diario 1908–1935)
The Catalan-Spanish 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, the association 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. Artěl. Umění pro všední den 1908–1935 (Artěl. Art for Everyday Use 1908–1935))
The Czech 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, the association 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. Beastly Show - Cross-polination in the Art of M. Cihlář and V. Richterová)
The volume introduces a selection from the artists’ works inspired the animal realm. On 128 pages and in 335 reproductions of animals arranged in alphabetical order according to their names, the authored book prepared by Michal Cihlář (the author of the book concept, graphic design and most of the photographs) documents Cihlář’s applied graphic design and individual prints, as well as Richterová’s sculptures fashioned from traditional as well as new sculptural materials, such as PET bottles. Biedermeier: Art and Culture in the Bohemian Lands 1814–1848. Exhibition Guide)
Biedermeier – the lifestyle as well as artistic style of the first half of the nineteenth century – was created by aristocracy and wealthy bourgeoisie, and gradually affected all strata of society. In the spirit of emerging civil society it was professing the ideals of practicality and simplicity, discovering the charm of everyday objects and pleasures as well as the beauty of nature and natural materials. Characteristic features of Biedermeier – the restrained elegance and straightforwardness – echoed the general modernisation of society and had come to embody the foreshadowing of modern design. Biedermeier: Art and Culture in the Bohemian Lands 1814—1848)
The publication contains an overview of fine and applied arts of Biedermeier era in the Bohemian Lands presented from a viewpoint of current debate about the nature of this specific artistic and ideological trend. The first part is comprised of thematic essays that concentrate on varied spheres of art production of the period as well as its social and ideological roots. Special attention is devoted to cabinetmaking art, Bohemian glass and porcelain, fashion, as well as painting and graphic arts. The second, catalogue section, includes over 800 colour reproductions of exhibits and most of the entries are accompanied by a short annotation. This part is divided into several portions that follow the theme of home, elegant simplicity of the new style, inspiration by urban life as well as the cult of nature and natural materials.
The book has been published by the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague and Gallery, Ltd, in August 2010.
Biedermeier: The Art and Culture in the Central Europe 1815-1848)
Biedermeier: Arte E Cultura Nella Mitteleuropa 1815–1848
Art et culture dans L'empire austro-hongrois, 1815-1848
In May 2000, a representative overview of the Biedermeier style in art was hosted at the Palazzo della Ragione in Padua, Italy. This was the first comprehensive exhibition to present the distinctive aesthetic movement and life style of the first half of the 19th century through artefacts from Bohemian and Moravian art collections. The exhibition was prepared by UPM in conjunction with the National Gallery in Prague and Comune di Padova. In collaboration with the Skira publishing company in Milan, the museum issued an accompanying Italian-English-French catalogue. The superb originality, quality and craftsmanship of Central European artists and manufacturers are documented in more than 300 reproductions of objects from the collections of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, the National Gallery in Prague and other prominent Czech art institutions. The book covers painting, drawing and graphic art, the art of furniture-making, jewellery, glass and ceramics, miniatures and daguerreotypes. Buquoy Glass in Bohemia)
The Buquoy noble family, originally from the region of Artois (in the past, a part of the Spanish Low Countries, now France), entered the Bohemian scene through the person of Charles Bonaventure de Longeval, Count of Bucquoy, a commander of the Imperial Army (1571–1621). In 1620, Emperor Ferdinand II granted the general confiscated estates at Nové Hrady, Rožmberk and Libějovice in southern Bohemia. In the region with a rich glass-making tradition, the Buquoys strove to carry on the heritage of the once-famous Rožmberk glassworks. From the mid-17th to the 18th century, the Buquoy glass houses in southern Bohemia produced intricately-shaped goblets, sauce boats, bowls, table centrepieces, humorous jugs and other objects, preserved in many museums and private collections. Production did not only specialize in hot-formed glass; glass-cutting and glass-engraving workshops are known to have been worked at the glassworks and in their immediate vicinity. The first half of the 19th century is generally regarded as the peak period in the history of Buquoy glass manufacture. The then owner of the estate, Jiří František Buquoy, a naturalist and philosopher, was instrumental in introducing many new techniques in the south Bohemian glassworks. One of his innovations included the invention of black and red hyalith glass, which soon met with high acclaim both in the Czech lands and abroad. To this day, this type of glassware is highly coveted by glass collectors and specialists. Clock and Watches from the Collection of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague)
The horology collection of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague is one of the largest and most varied in the Czech Republic in terms of kind as well as artistic design. It shows changes in time-keeping in particular from the point of view of artistic treatment of clock cases, while documenting the development of the clock mechanism. Clocks and Watches in the Collection of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague)
The collection of clocks and watches shows changes in time-keeping in particular from the point of view of artistic treatment of clock cases, while documenting the development of the clock mechanism. The horology collection of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague is one of the largest and most varied in the Czech Republic in terms of kind as well as artistic design. Whereas the National Technical Museum specializes in the mechanical aspect of clocks, the Museum of Decorative Arts focuses on artistically shaped and decorated items. Coming soon! Fashion Behind the Iron Curtain)
Society, Clothing and People in Czechoslovakia 1948–1989
The book traces the history of fashion in Czechoslovakia within a political and social context between the years 1948 and 1989. This period was affected by a totalitarian Communist regime that influenced all spheres of life. Clothing became part of an ideological struggle and a tool for creating a new relationship that subordinated individuals to society as a whole. The suppression of individuality was manifested with similar consistency both in fashion and everyday life. Exerted with varying intensity throughout the forty-year era of Communist Party rule, this pressure was marked by a development from the harsh stance of the official authorities in the early fifties, through the adoption of external forms of the lifestyle and fashions embraced by Western democratic society in the mid-sixties, to the collapse of the totalitarian government in Czechoslovakia in 1989. CubiCZmus! Die Dekonstruktion der Moderne in Prag)
The English-German catalogue published to accompany the exhibition at the Postsparkasse in Vienna explores the period between 1910 and 1920 - an era of early and mature stages of Czech Cubism represented by the most noted proponents of this style, architects and artists P. Janák, J. Gočár, V. Hofman, J. Chochol, O. Novotný, A. Procházka, J. V. Kroha, and others. The publication traces the roots of Cubism after 1900 in connection with Vienna Modernism (Geometric Secession) and discusses the collaboration of architects with Czech artists associated in the Group of Fine Artists, and their involvement in the activities carried out by the Artěl Cooperative, the Prague Art Workshops and the Union of Czech Artwork. It analyzes the art movement’s theoretical considerations and their practical application in various fields of creativity, including furniture-making, interior decoration, ceramics, glass, metalwork and graphic art. Czech Cubism)
A Guide to the permanent exhibition of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague
The book devoted to Czech Cubism guides readers through the individual thematic sections of the exhibition on display in the House at the Black Madonna – Prague’s first building in the Cubist style. The key themes – including “The Group of Fine Artists”, “The Cubist interior and furniture design” and “The oblique plane and the crystal”, to name a few – explore relationships between the fine arts, architecture and interior design. The essays are complemented by reproductions illustrating furniture, ceramics, glass and metal objects, ornamental tapestry patterns, posters and prints from the collections of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, the Moravian Gallery in Brno and the National Museum. The ntegration of the fine and applied arts in the Cubist period is documented through paintings and sculptures on loan from the National Gallery in Prague, the Gallery of West Bohemia in Pilsen and a private collection. The foremost figures of Czech Cubism, among them Josef Gočár, Vlastislav Hofman, Pavel Janák, Otto Gutfreund, Emil Filla, Josef Čapek, Bohumil Kubišta, Václav Špála and others, are briefly introduced in “Profiles of artists and theoreticians”. The “Timeline” presents the main events of the second decade of the 20th century that formed a backdrop to the artistic milieu of the Cubists, their fans and their critics.
Czech Fashion 1780–1870: For Salons and Promenade)
Volume One of the Czech Fashion edition
In the late 18th century under the influence of the Enlightenment, women divested themselves of corsets and crinolines and, shielded by the enthusiastic reception of Classical culture, opted for comfortable, almost reformist clothing. The Biedermeier of the middle classes brought women in Central Europe from their venture into the Classical world back to the family hearths and traditional forms of dress that enhanced the concepts of female charm and maternal feelings. The natural evolution of fashion from the Biedermeier to the Rococo Revival style was interrupted by the revolutionary events of 1848, in which Czech women demonstrated considerable patriotism in wearing distinctive national costumes. However, with the onset of the second half of the 19th century, they were rapidly ushered into a new era that re-introduced the tight bodice, a wealth of frilly lace and luxurious fabrics nostalgically reminiscent of the playful Rococo style.
The text is accompanied by photographs of garments and clothing accessories from UPM’s collections, drawings of women’s attire from a unique sketchbook, illustrations from Prague fashion magazines (including one of the first European fashion journals published in Prague in 1787–1788), as well as daguerreotypes, photographs and pattern supplements. Articles by prominent specialists and the rich documentary material represent yet another piece in the mosaic of Czech fashion production as shown in the international context.
The publication was issued by the OLYMPIA publishing house in cooperation with the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague. Czech Fashion 1918–1939. Elegance of the Czechoslovak First Republic)
Volume Three of the Czech Fashion edition
The book documents the transformations in fashion styles during Czechoslovakia’s First Republic – an interwar era that saw the culmination of the efforts of many generations to introduce modern, practical clothing, and the development and further improvement of Czech fashion production. Haute-couture salons were in regular contact with Paris, where salon proprietors and their designers travelled to see fashion shows and bring back with them patterns and designs for inspiration. During this period, numerous original fashion and society magazines were founded and the first fashion shows were staged in Prague, as well. The country’s highly-developed textile industry provided a solid base for Czech fashion production.
Clothing of the first half of the 1920s was characterized by a decorative style, later called Art Deco; folk art tendencies were a distinctive manifestation of Czech Art Deco. The outcome of women’s emancipation efforts, and their greater money-earning and sporting possibilities in the era of the Charleston in the second half of the 1920s were manifested by a modern, practical style of dress, a greater variation of types of clothing and a style typified by the historically shortest skirts ever. Conversely, the thirties marked a return to female elegance, exquisite materials and inventiveness in detail. During the final pre-war years, close-fitting bodices reappeared, shaping the female silhouette, while elements of men’s and military attire also became fashionable in women’s clothing. Czech Fashion 1940–1970: Mirror of the Times)
Volume Four of the Czech Fashion edition
Richly illustrated with examples of clothing from UPM’s collections and photos from period journals and other historical sources, this book is devoted to the period from 1940–1970, when fashion in Czechoslovakia evolved under the impact of two totalitarian regimes – Nazism and Communism. Although the war-period clothing style drew on the previous period when Czech fashion and haute couture flourished, it was strongly limited by the war events. The brief period between 1945 and 1948 was characterized by a rapid return to the pre-war standards of dress and fashion; however, this process was forcibly halted in 1948. The newly-installed Communist regime saw clothing as a very important tool for its ideological struggle. In collaboration with the other “People’s Democracies”, a fashion was to be designed that would reflect the “New Man and Woman” and would be independent of the so-called international fashion. It was only in the second half of the 1950s that ideological pressure was gradually relaxed, which in turn re-introduced world fashion into the country in the 1960s.
Irrespective of these limiting factors, exclusive fashions were designed and created in Czechoslovakia. This trend was owed to designers, superb cutters, tailors and dressmakers, who had received their specialized training and practice before World War II. Garments produced by the Oděvní tvorba clothing company and in the design workshops of Textilní tvorba (the precursor of the Institute of Interior and Clothing Design in Prague, ÚBOK) were officially presented at domestic and especially foreign shows as achievements of Czechoslovakia’s textile industry.
The publication was issued by the OLYMPIA publishing house in cooperation with the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague to accompany the exhibition held in the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, December 2000 – February 2001. Czech Glass 1945—1980: Design in an Age of Adversity and Illusion)
Through a representative selection of glass, the Czech-language publication presents to the readers a period of turmoil, when art glass gradually extricated itself from its largely utilitarian and decorative functions. In this process, Czech glass designers and artists played a revolutionary role, which left an indelible mark on the world glass movement. The illustrations are mostly examples from the glass collection in the possession of the Steinberg Foundation in Luxembourg. Czech Photography of the 20th Century)
The best photography book published in Central and Eastern Europe in 2009-2010 competition, 1st Prize in the category Historical Photography
The most comprehensive book on Czech Photography examines the individual movements and tendencies in photography throughout the 20th century. These include early-century styles (Pictorialism, documentary and reportage photography), modern photographic trends of the twenties, Surrealist experimentation and Poetism, postwar reportage and documentary photography, art photography and its various offshoots (The Happening, Land Art, Conceptual Art and Body Art), to staged and portrait photography of the late 20th century.
Almost two hundred photographers have been selected, among them Josef Sudek, František Drtikol, Jaromír Funke, Jaroslav Rössler, Karel Hájek, Václav Jírů, Vilém Reichmann, Jan Reich, Jan Saudek, Josef Koudelka, and others. The reproductions of images lent from Czech and foreign collections offer a complex overview of 20th-century photography in the Bohemian Lands. Czech Photography of the 20th Century – Guide)
It is a comprehensive presentation of the main trends, personalities, and works of Czech photography from 1901 to 2000. Not wanting to show merely works by the most important photographers such as F. Drtikol, J. Sudek, J. Rössler, J. Funke, J. Štyrský, J. Koudelka, J. Svoboda, J. Saudek, J. Štreit, and A. Kratochvíl, the authors have sought to document various creative trends also with photographs by lesser known and sometimes even totally forgotten photographers. Czech Posters between the Wars: 1918–1938)
Illustrated posters in the Czech Lands, as in all of Europe, began in the mid-19th century, thanks to advances in printing technology, in particular lithography. The latter half of the 1890s, up until 1900, marked the peak of "postermania" in the Czech Lands, and in Central Europe as a whole. The twenty years between World Wars I and II may be viewed as the poster’s second golden age. The posters in this catalogue present various aspects of life in interwar Prague, the capital city and natural center of the new, confident state. Some of them are by well-known artists; the others, however, are the work of little-known names.
The catalogue was issued by the Museum in cooperation with the Czech Center New York to accompany the exhibition in the Czech Center New York, May – June, 2001. Daniel a Ignác Preisslerové – barokní malíři skla a porcelánu)
The Czech language book with English a German summaries presents an exceptional body of works decorated with a specific type of painting on glass and porcelain. Usually, these works have mainly been attributed to Ignaz Preissler (1676–1741), but most recently his father Daniel (1636–1733) has also been recognized. Both artists were active in the town of Kunštát (Kronstadt) in eastern Bohemia. The publication includes a catalogue of the objects housed in museums and private collections in the Czech Republic, together with reproductions of outstanding pieces kept in foreign collections. This is the first book to offer a comprehensive look at the noteworthy (and at times controversially interpreted) collection. Danner-Preis '02: Lebendig & zeitlos / Vivid & Timeless)
Kunsthandwerk im 21. Jahrhundert / Craft in the 21st Century
The German-English catalogue presents works created by the Danner-Preis 02 competitors. Since 1984 the Munich-based Benno and Therese Danner Art Foundation (Danner-Stiftung) announces a triennial competition that is one of the most prestigious award-granting events in the field of European decorative arts. Based on strict criteria, an international jury selected objects made in a variety of media: jewellery, ceramics, glass, metal, wood, textile, paper and stone. Fifty-two artists were selected from 230 competitors. The common denominator of the Danner-Preis 02 entries are the concepts “vivid” and “timeless”. The competitors are both experienced masters in their respective fields and young artists noteworthy for their innovative formal solutions.
The catalogue was issued to accompany the Danner-Preis 02 competition and the exhibition held in the Museum of Decorative Art in Prague, November 2002–February 2003. DESIGN – PROFILES – KEY FIGURES)
New Edition Series
of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague
and the Arbor Vitae publishing house
There has been a lack of scholarly and popularizing publications devoted to Czech design and decorative art that would discuss contemporary and historical events, and explore traditional and experimental endeavours in the field. Such books are badly needed both by the Czech public and foreign readers interested in Czech design and decorative art. This is perhaps why Czech design has been at the margin of world interest, rather than at its centre.
The Design – Profiles – Key Figures edition series responds to this need, examining key figures in various fields of design, applied photography and fashion of the 20th and 21st centuries. We are convinced that the edition will become a fundamental source for the deeper understanding of the developments and trends in Czech decorative art and design within an international context. The texts will be published in Czech and English language edition. Družstevní práce: Sutnar - Sudek)
Schönste Bücher aus alles Welt – Stiftung Buchkunst Frankfurt am Main
The book examines the famous era of Družstevní práce, a period when Ladislav Sutnar, one of the founders of modern typography and a versatile art designer, was engaged as the publishing house's art director and Josef Sudek as its advertisement photographer.
It was issued by the Museum in cooperation with Arbir Vitae publishing house to accompany the exhibition held in the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, 14. 12. 2006 – 18. 2. 2007. El espectáculo en Praga 1900–1938)
The book was published to accompany an exhibition of posters advertising entertainment in Prague, housed in UPM’s collections, an event that UPM prepared for the MuVIM museum in Valencia. The book traces the history of this type of posters from 1900 to 1930, as Prague gradually changed from a provincial town into a modern, self-confident city and eventually the capital of an independent state. Posters in particular offer a unique testimony to this transformation: lithographic posters became an ubiquitous feature of turn-of-the century Prague’s streets and alleys, which was later than in Paris, London and New York, but almost simultaneously as in the monarchy’s capital Vienna. The posters showcase different forms of entertainment in Prague of those days, including night clubs, various festivals, balls and soirées organized by clubs and civic associations, as well as circus and magic shows and, last but not least, the film industry. With a few exceptions, the era of the pictorial poster ended in 1930 with the onset of the Depression. Eugen Wiškovský)
The oeuvre of the Czech avant-garde photographer Eugen Wiškovský (1888-1964) is not great in terms of number or thematic scope, but in its originality, conceptual depth and formal mastery. In his early works made in the style of New Objectivity, Wiškovský sought visually compelling forms in objects seemingly lacking aesthetic qualities, which he manipulated by cut-outs, a change of scale or inventive work with light. In his dynamic, diagonal compositions using unusual angles of shots, he was one of the most radical exponents of Czech Constructivist photography. His landscape photography also boasts great originality. Of equal importance are Wiškovský’s treatises on photography theory, in which he applied aspects from the psychology of forms. A number of the photographs reproduced in the book come from UPM’s collection. Eva Eisler)
Design – Profiles – Key Figures series
Eva Eisler (b. 1952) earned her international reputation as a jewellery designer. Her works are imbued with architectural visions and multifarious concepts. While Eva Eisler’s realizations in the fields of interior and exhibition design, and fine art gradually gained importance from the 1990s, her first public presentations had already taken place in the early seventies in Czechoslovakia. Her mature creative output is connected with her life in the United States, where the artist moved to in 1983, together with her life partner, architect John Eisler. From 2000, both are also working again in the Czech Republic. The monograph explores the artist’s work throughout her creative career and in its broad typological range. Emphasis is placed on her jewellery design of the second half of the seventies and the eighties when Eva Eisler formulated the fundamental stylistic and formal concepts of her artwork. In the United States, the artist is regarded as a representative of European art jewellery traditions, while in the Czech Republic she is perceived as a messenger of the American artistic approach. However, what matters more than the provenance of her creations is their superb quality and distinctive originality. Fabric of Fashion)
The publication on contemporary textile design and fashion from the Great Britain was issued in cooperation with the British Council to accompany the exhibition in the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, February – April, 2002. Fashion in Bohemia 1870–1918. From the Waltz to the Tango)
Volume Two of the Czech Fashion edition
This volume of the Czech Fashion edition centres on Czech clothing production from 1870–1918 in many different, formally determining contexts. The book examines society in Bohemia, its goals and social events, women’s emancipation efforts and the endeavour to reform clothing, the dress code, organization of the clothing industry, the establishment of haute-couture salons, the development of ready-to-wear clothing and a list of fashion magazines published in Bohemia. The volume gives a detailed account of the evolution of fashion styles as they appeared in the Czech lands, from a variety of revival fashions, through the individual phases of Art Nouveau attire, to ventures into designing a national, folk-type costume. The articles are richly illustrated with examples from period fashion magazines, reproductions of garments and clothing accessories from UPM’s collections, portraits and vintage photographs. The publication is intended for a broad readership, as well as specialists in historical costume. Flowers in the Dustbin - Society and Fashion in Czechoslovakia in the Seventies)
A publication by Konstantina Hlaváčková, with an introduction by Pavel Kosatík, recalls the key events of the seventies and their effects on the fashion and lifestyle of the people of the western world and the former Czechoslovakia.
Etapy života a fotografického díla (The Stages of Life and Photographic Work)
/ Secese – Art deco – Abstrakce / 1, 2 (Art Nouveau – Art Deco – Abstraction / 1, 2)
The Honorably Mention - Awards for The Best Photography Books Published in Eastern Europe in 2013-2014.
The text of this two-volume monograph on the photographic work of František Drtikol was written by the art historian Anna Fárová (1928–2010). The book is the most comprehensive survey of the essential aspects of Drtikol’s oeuvre. The picture material was drawn mainly from the holdings of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague that houses the world’s largest collection of Drtikol’s photographs, and from several outstanding private collections. Most photographs were printed true to size owing to the format of the book and the use of the Heidelberg frequency-modulated Satin Screening method.
This book was published by the Svět publishing house in collaboration with the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague. František Drtikol: Photographs 1901–1914)
The exhibition catalogue reveals an unknown side of one of the best known Czech photographers. Portraits, ladscapes and scenes from the old town of Prague represent the artist´s early period, marked by the close connections between photography and symbolism. By highlighting the period between 1901 and 1914, when photography went hand in hand with painting, it wishes to display the work of a photographer who can be regarded as a pronounced pictorialist.
The publication was issued by the Kant publishing house in cooperation with the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague and Neumann Foundation, Gingins (Switzerland), to accompany the exhibition held at the Neumann Foundation in 1999 and in the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, March – June, 2000. František Drtikol: Photographs from the Years 1918–1935)
The book offers a selection from Drtikol’s oeuvre dated to between 1918 and 1935, showcasing other fascinating facets of Drtikol’s artistic legacy beside his classic works. The publication is a continuation of “František Drtikol: Photographs from 1901-1914” and the album entitled “From Large and Little Courtyards of Old Prague”, prepared by UPM in collaboration with Fondation Neumann of Switzerland in 1999.
After World War I, having exhausted Art Nouveau themes, Drtikol embraced a new, distinctive artistic idiom that brought him to geometric compositions in the early 1920s. These images culminated in photographs implementing architectural elements, which gradually became a balanced component of his “still-life” photos, alongside his nudes. In the 1930s, he created a series of photographs, in which he supplanted the live model with staged silhouettes of paper figurines, combined with compelling lighting effects. According to the artist, by stylizing female proportions, “…I idealized the body and created a type of my own”. The final stage of Drtikol’s creative career was influenced by his interest in philosophy, Christian faith and Buddhism. A collection of photographs was produced along these lines, with purely abstract forms.
The publication was issued to accompany the exhibition in the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, March – June, 2004. From Neuwelt to the Whole World / 300 Years of Harrach Glass)
The Harrach Glassworks in Neuwelt (Nový Svět) in the Krkonoše Mountains ranks among the most accomplished companies that have had a determining influence on the world renown of Czech glassmaking. The first authoritative monograph on this oldest existing glassworks in Bohemia summarizes the findings of the decade-plus archival research and classification of glass collections in Czech and foreign museums. The volume features essays and selected examples of the Harrach glassworks’ output, accompanied by a rich body of illustrations. The book provides a detailed history of Harrach glass, starting with products fashioned in the Baroque style, through its highly varied output in the Biedermeier and Historicism styles, followed by distinctive Art Nouveau forms, and the glassworks’ attempts to adapt its products to the Art Deco and Functionalist styles, all the way to innovative approaches to glass design after 1945, and ending with contemporary glass. Gallery and Museum Education 2)
Art and Culture in School Context/Learning from Art
Educational programs of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague
and the Galerie Rudolfinum in 2012 and 2013
The book introduces a set of educational programs realized at the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague (UPM) and the Galerie Rudolfinum (GR) in 2012 and the first half of 2013. It builds on the previous volume titled One’s Own Path to Art: Educational programmes of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague and Galerie Rudolfinum in 2011. The educational programs were created as part of the pedagogical action research carried out by a team of specialists from the Department of Art Education of the Pedagogical Faculty, Charles University in Prague and are herein framed by essays on the theoretical background of and current trends in the area of gallery and museum education. Also included are reflections from a wider group of research participants.
Individual chapters focus on and elaborate pedagogical approaches to educational programming designed for specific exhibitions. Educational programs comprised eight projects carried out at the museum, the gallery and at schools participating in the research project. Gallery and Museum Education I / Following One’s Own Path Toward Art)
Educational Programmes Prepared by the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague and the Rudolfinum Gallery in 2011
The Most Beautiful Czech Book of the Year 2012 – 3rd place, Textbooks category
The publication presents various types of educational programmes prepared by UPM and the Rudolfinum Gallery in 2011, in collaboration with the Art Education Department of the Faculty of Education of Charles University in Prague, to accompany their exhibition projects. Based on the active educational research conducted by a team of specialists from the Art Education Department, the programmes are accompanied by essays devoted to theoretical premises, current trends in the field of gallery and museum pedagogy, and reflections of numerous research participants. The texts written by curators and participating educators, coupled by authentic testimonials of visitors, give a glimpse of the actual process of creating and realizing such programmes. The book’s pictorial accompaniment shows readers the exhibition premises, as well as art workshops that are an integral part of all exhibitions staged by UPM and the Rudolfinum Gallery. The book is intended for teachers and students of fine art, history, aesthetics and humanities basics, as well as educational programme and exhibition curators, and all those seeking “their own path toward art”. 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. Glass and Light - 150 Years of the Secondary School of Glassmaking in Kamenický Šenov)
The publication was prepared in collaboration with the Secondary Schoold of Glassmaking in Kamenický Šenov to accompany the exhibition held in the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, 15. 6. – 17. 9. 2006, and in the Design Centre of the Czech Republic, Prague, 15. 6. – 16. 8. 2006. Glass Link Stockholm – Praha)
The publication is featuring the most remarkable works of Swedish art glass of the 20th century from such renowned glassoworks as Orrefors and Kosta, as well as unique art glass objects created in the studios of noted Swedish glass artists. Sweden and the Czech lands have been linked through a long-lasting tradition of collaboration and mutual inspiration in the fields of applied and studio art glass. The book also centres on documenting various joint trends in the manufacture of glass during the 20th century. How to order books)
Please make your order for museum publications, to be paid at time of delivery, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
On January 11, 2015, the bookstore in the museum's lobby closed due to reconstruction work on the historic building.
Some books are available in these bookshops in Prague 1
(see a particular book):
- House at the Stone Bell, No. 13, Old Town Square (Dům U Kamenného Zvonu, Staroměstské nám.)
- K.A.V.K.A., No. 5, Krocínova Street (www.kavkaartbooks.com/cs)
- Municipal House (Obecní dům, Modernista Art Shop), No. 5, nám. Republiky Square
- Judith Tower (Club for Old Prague), No. 1, Mostecká Street
- House at the Black Madonna, No. 19, Ovocný trh Image to print - Petr Kneubühler and Artists of His Studio)
Petr Kneubühler a umělci jeho dílny
The catalogue introduces works from the studio of the famous Swiss printer Peter Kneubühler (1944–1999), who was not only a true magician in a great many printing techniques, but above all the friend and business partner of such noted artists as Markus Raetz, Eric Fischl, Luc Tuymans, Mario Merz and Jan Jedlička. A section of the book is devoted to Czech scholarship holders – Petr Písařík, Milena Dopitová, Irena Jůzová, Markéta Vaňková, Krištof Kinter and Vladimír Skrepl, who were privileged to work in Peter Kneubühler’s studio. The texts are complemented by a glossary of basic printing methods. 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. Japanese Poster – Today. From the DNP Archives of Graphic Design / Japanische Plakate - Heute)
The catalogue presents contemporary Japanese posters by more than twenty foremost designers. There are the works of young graphic artists, who entered the scene in the 1980s and 1990s as well as of the earlier “generation of masters”, aligned with the creative pursuits of the famed JAAC – Japan Advertising Artists Club. The distinctive aesthetics of Japanese graphic design has been admired over many decades, winning awards at prestigious international venues. The works of Japanese graphic designers are noted for their resourcefulness, powerful visual expression and extraordinary printing sophistication. Jindřich Štyrský. On the Needles of These Days. Fotografie 1934–1935)
In the 1920s, Jindřich Štyrský (1899–1942) was one of the foremost members of the avant-garde art union Devětsil. For several years, he lived in Paris with the artist Toyen. After returning to Prague, he worked for the Liberated Theatre and published the Erotic Revue and Edition 69. In 1934, together with a number of his friends, he co-founded the Surrealist Group of Czechoslovakia. His photographic series A Man with Blinkers, Frog Man (both 1934) and A Paris Afternoon (1935) capture what are seemingly banal themes from everyday life. Many of the pictures show old, damaged, decaying items. “For him... reality becomes a tormenting and cruel phantom...” (Karel Teige). Josef Sudek: Prag panoramique / Prague Panoramic)
Panoramic image became Josef Sudek’s natural means of capturing the world around him. It is this particular facet of his artistic legacy that is viewed today as his most impressive one. In 1959, they were published in Praha panoramatická (Prague Panoramas, Prague 1959), which is as one of the landmarks of world photography. Originally, the author had intended to create a large cycle of images capturing especially the city’s periphery, the slums on the edge of town. Although he was intrigued by “regal Prague“ with its innumerable historical places and monuments, in his heart he was drawn to the outskirts of the metropolis, where rows of derelict houses inhabited by workers, as well as factory courtyards, meshed with the dust-ridden countryside. 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
price (at the Museum): 690,- CZK
Order (cash on delivery): email@example.com
The volume is on sale also in the K.A.V.K.A. bookshop, Krocínova ulice 5, Prague 1 (www.kavkaartbooks.com/cs). 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. Ladislav Sutnar: Praha–New York–Design in Action)
The publication was issued by the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague in cooperation with the Argo publishing house to accompany the exhibition held at the Prague Castle, June – September, 2003. Landscape / Image / Photography)
The landscape, the crossing-point between man and nature, has been a key theme in visual culture since the start of the 19the century. Its image becomes the projection area for the esthetic, philosophical and ideological reference and metaphor of the human relationships to the world. Landscape painting, whose boom characterizes the development of creative art in the 19th century, brings to the world of images the ever more urgent real landscape, but at the same time, it constitutes the rigid stereotypes with image clichés. The clichés are at first primarily accepted even by landscape photography, which complements this scheme with the material perfection of technical depiction. For landscape painting, photography becomes not only a helpful and amply-utilized aid, but mainly a relevant counterpart that reminds of the very task of artistic depiction. Thanks to photography, landscape painting emancipates from the dictate of being bound to topography and discovers its own new schemes.
The publication illustrates this development of the confrontation of the representative works of essential authors of Czech landscape photography and landscape painting of the 19the century and beginning of the 20th century: Jindřich Eckert, Antonín Mánes, František Drtikol, Jakub Schikaneder, Karel Maria Chotek, Antonín Slavíček and others. Masterpieces of Glass from the Collection of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague)
The publication includes more then 200 objects of European glassmaking from antiquity to the interwar period.
Published by the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague in collaboration with Shanghai Youxiang Art Exhibitions and Exchange Developmnet Co., Ltd. to accompany the exhibition held in the Hunan Provincial Museum, Changsha (20 June – 14 September, 2014), Inner Mongolia Museum, Hohhot (26 September – 14 December, 2014), Beijing Art Museum (6 January – 15 March, 2015), Henan Museum, Zhengzhou (27 March – 14 June, 2015), and Liaoning Provincial Museum, Shenyang (7 July – 7 October, 2015). Matchbox)
Abounding in Matchbox models, this booklet documents a pastime that was enjoyed by several generations of children and adults. Lesney Products, a British manufacturing company, produced miniature models of cars from the late 1940s. What made its products unique were their matchbox size, model/box combination and low price. The Matchbox 1–75 series was soon followed by further product lines that innovated and varied the vehicles’ designs (Superfasts, Major Packs, King Size) and, last but not least, the vintage Models of Yesteryear range made as adults’ collectibles. During the sixties and seventies in Czechoslovakia Matchbox models came as a revelation. They were admired for their extraordinary precision that copied the originals, as well as for their functionality, bright colours and durable materials. These were qualities lacking in other toys and even in many real cars produced in the Eastern Bloc. During the era of Real Socialism, the magical label “Made in England” came to be a symbol of the unattainable West. Matchbox models were not only a popular iconic children’s toy, but also became an adults’ collectible. Memories Returned)
Memories Returned: Jewish property at the Museum of Decorative Arts, Prague
Návraty paměti: Deponáty židovského majetku v Uměleckoprůmyslovém museu v Praze
It was published by Tilia and the Institute for Contemporary History, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic (Documentation Centre for Property Transfers of Cultural Assets of World War II Victims). The related exhibition was on view in the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague from June 27 to September 28, 2009. It was an accompanying event to the Holocaust Era Assets Conference, held from June 26–30, 2009, in Prague and Terezín. Metalmorphoses: Tradition and Innovation in British Silver and Metalwork)
It follows the history of silversmithing and metalwork in Britain from the 19th century´s attempt to combat the decline in the quality of silverware. It comprises for example some of the most radical designs by Christopehr Dresser for simple, functional, electroplated vessels made by Dixon and Sons. They have endured due to the modernity of their shapes as well as the visionary conviction of their designer that a good quality product shoud be affordable. Metamorphosis of Fibre: Personalities of Czech Lace during the Second Half of the 20th Century)
The conception of lace began to radically change in the late 1950´s. It completely departed from its traditional function and became a three-dimensional monumental piece. The innovative, artistically independent approach towards lace, connected with perfect knowledge of clasic techniques, had encouraged a rich creation of three generations of female artists. Their contribution to the development in the world has been proven many times by the receipt of awards at international exhibitions - the firs award at Expo in Brussels 1958, later Expo in Montreal 1967 and to a number of awards form the International Lace Biennial in Brussels. Now the artists are being sought a new approach to lace only with difficulties.
The publication was issued to accompany the exhibition in the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, July – August, 2004. Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague – Guide)
A Guide to the permanent exhibition of the Museum of Decorative Arts called "The Stories of Materials" beginning with The Story of Fibre: the textiles and fashion hall, and continues with Time Machines: the clocks and watches hall, The Fire Arts: the glass and ceramics hall, Print and Picture: the hall of graphic design and photography, and The Treasury: the hall of metals and various other materials. There is also information about branches of the Museum, its permanent exhibitions in Prague and elsewhere, and exhibitions in chateaux. Neoclassicism and Biedermeier from the Collections of the Prince of Liechtenstein)
The catalogue explores art treasures of the Neoclassical and Biedermeier eras from the rich collections of Hans-Adam II, the reigning Prince of Liechtenstein. Superb portrait, landscape and genre paintings by noted Viennese artists — Heinrich Füger, Friedrich von Amerling, Peter Fendi and Ferdinand Georg Waldmüller — attest to the role of the Princely Family as a leading patron, commissioner and collector of the arts. More than 300 works are included — paintings, sculpture, unique collections of Viennese hand-painted porcelain, architectural plans and furniture. The publication also focuses on the former Liechtenstein estates in Moravia. Vedute, water-colour paintings of interiors and furniture, especially from the Liechtensteins’ country seats at Valtice and Lednice, provide an in-depth look at the lifestyle of this aristocratic family.
The book was published by the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague and the Liechtenstein Museum, Vienna, to accompany the exhibition held in the Waldstein Riding Hall in Prague, May 6 — October 17, 2010.
Never before Seen in Prague)
Published to accompany an exhibition of posters advertising Prague entertainment venues, the book traces the years 1900–1930, as Prague gradually changed from a provincial town into a modern, self-confident city and eventually into the capital of an independent state. Poster art is a unique testimonial to this transformation: at the turn of the century, lithographic posters became an integral part of Prague’s streets and alleyways, later than in such metropolises as Paris, London and New York, yet virtually at the same time as the monarchy’s capital Vienna. With some exceptions, the Depression put an end to the era of the pictorial poster in 1930. The posters present diverse forms of entertainment in Prague: night clubs, social functions, balls, soirées organized by various voluntary associations, circus shows and magician performances, and – last but not least – the film industry.
The publication was issued by the Municipal House in Prague in cooperation with the Museum of Decorative Arts to accompany the exhibition held in the Municipal House, September 2005 – January 2006. Ornamental Prints / Ornamentstiche / Ornamentální rytiny)
The book was prepared by the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, Kunstbibliothek Berlin and Museum für angewandte Kunst Wien on the occasion of the completion of the international project entitled Ornamental Prints supported by the EU – Culture 2000 programme.
These three institutions created on-line database of their ornamental print collections: www.ornamentalprints.eu. Outside and Inside. Man-Made Fibres and Clothing from the Mid-Twentieth)
The book examines fashion and clothing as the outcome of a long process founded on scientific and practical disciplines of human activity, crowned by the fashion designer’s creative ideas. It explores materials made from man-made fibres, whose production was stimulated by the rapid development of the textile, clothing and chemical industries after World War II. Man-made fibre manufacturing is discussed in context with technological and industrial progress, social relations, environment protection and other fields, including health care and medicine. The subject is richly illustrated with images of garments from the museum’s collections and unique microphotos of fibres.
This book has been published by the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague in collaboration with Arbor vitae publishers to accompany the exhibition held in the Museum from October 2, 2014 to January 11, 2015. 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. Padova: The City and Its Museums)
Through a body of works from Padua’s municipal museums, this book acquaints readers with the history of the famous city in northern Italy and gives an account of the wealth and diversity of its art treasures. The volume features objects from the collections of the Archaeological Museum (Museo Archeologico), showcasing artefacts from Antiquity to the Roman period. Also presented are works from the holdings of the Museum of Medieval and Modern Art (Museo d'Arte Medievale e Moderna), an institution that ranks with the richest art depositories in north-eastern Italy owing to its works of the Venetian School of painting from the 14th-18th centuries. Last but not least, the book shows artefacts from the Bottacin Museum (Museo Bottacin) that houses coins and medals dating from ancient times to the present, as well as a collection of 19th-century statuary.
The publication was issued to accompany the exhibition prepared by Villaggio Globale Int., Mogliano Veneto and Musei Civici di Padova held in the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, November 1999 – February 2000. Prague art nouveau, métamorphoses d´un style)
Prominent Czech art theorists discuss the transformation of Prague’s Art Nouveau style, as exemplified by objects from the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, the National Gallery in Prague and the National Technical Museum.
The catalogue was issued by Snoeck-Ducaju & Zoon.to accompany the exhibition held on the occasion of Europalia 98 in Palais des Beaux-Arts, Bruselles, October 1998 – January 1999. 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. Přírůstky sbírek Uměleckoprůmyslového musea v Praze v letech 1992–2002 (Museum of Decorative Arts in)
Acquisitions in the Collections of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague in 1992-2002
The publication focuses on UPM’s acquisition activities in the 1990s and the early years of the second millennium, when processes of restituting property to Churches and private subjects were conducted, and the museum had to seek new ways of expanding its collections. The book introduces the most important acquisitions in all fields of handicraft, applied arts and design, and presents their donors.
The publication was issued to accompany the exhibition in the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, December 2003 – February 2004. Scandinavian Design beyond the Myth)
Fifty Years of Design from the Nordic Countries
A major and lasting source of inspiration, Scandinavian design is associated with simplicity, modern elegance and pure, refined form. Yet what is the truth and what a mere myth? This is a question discussed by the authors of this book published to accompany a travelling exhibition which, in the years 2003–2006, was shown in eleven countries and in 2004 was staged at the Milan International Furniture Fair. The publication documents the variability of design that has been moulding and enhancing the image of Scandinavian design from the 1950s to the present day. All Nordic countries are represented in the volume: Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland and Island. The authors were inspired by Italo Calvino and his Six Memos for the Next Millennium: lightness, quickness, exactitude, visibility, multiplicity and consistency. They explore design in a broader context: in a world with greater mobility and communication, and inspiration from other cultures. In the international arena of the past fifteen years, Scandinavian design has also embraced new media, including music, video art and fashion. Schloss Klösterle an der Eger: Führer durch die Porzellanaustellung aus der Sammlung des Kunstgewerb)
Klášterec n. Ohří Chateau – guide to the permanent exhibition of porcelain from the collections of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague. It presents to the readers development of porcelain in the Bohemian Lands, including examples of Chinese and Japanese porcelain. Shapes and Spaces: The Collection of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague)
For the first time in its history, in the year of its 120th anniversary, the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague had the opportunity to introduce masterpieces from its collections in Portugal. With an introductory essay by Professor José de Monterroso Teixeira and texts by Daniela Karasová and other UPM curators, the book was published to accompany an exhibition hosted by the Museum of Portuguese Decorative Arts in Lisbon. It features unique objects made of glass, ceramics and porcelain, as well as furniture, jewellery, metals, textiles, clothing and graphic art dating from the Renaissance to the Art Nouveau periods, with a focus on Central Europe. The selection attests to the diversity and wealth of the Prague museum’s collections and documents how decorative art contributed to shaping Central Europe's cultural identity.
The publication was issued by the Fundação Ricardo do Espírito Santo Silva, Lisboa in the cooperation with the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague to accompany the exhibition in the Fundação Ricardo do Espírito Santo Silva, Lisboa, Autumn 2005. 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. Signum Design: Czech Design 1980–1999)
The book maps out the creative output of forty-two personalities in the field of Czech design during the final decade of the existence of Socialist Czechoslovakia and the following 1990s, when the market conditions underwent a radical change. In the 1980s, when the incompetent and cumbersome industrial sphere (with a few fine exceptions) buried all talent and good ideas, designers and architects reacted to this situation by manifesting a modern, contemporary style (the Edis and Atika artists’ groups). The transition to a market economy, globalization and the world’s markets brought new opportunities in the 1990s – a period that saw the emergence of new companies interested in collaborating with top-quality designers.
It was issued to accompany the exhibition in the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, June – October, 1999. Spanish Art Handicraft from 1550 to 1650)
The book traces Spanish arts and crafts preserved in the Czech Republic, both in the form of museum acquisitions and as former furnishings of aristocratic residences. Apart from works housed in the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, the volume features objects from the holdings of the North Bohemian Museum in Liberec, the Silesian Museum in Opava, and other institutions. The selection of exhibits attests to the existence of a superb and thriving culture that flourished in parallel with the rapid growth in the Central Europe of those days.
The publication was issued to accompany the exhibition in the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, June – October 1997. The History of Modern Furniture Design)
The richly illustrated monograph tells the story of modern furniture produced from the first half of the 19th century – the Biedermeier period – to the late 20th century. The book offers a comprehensive overview of the modern history of furniture in the Czech lands against the backdrop of significant developments in the field worldwide, including one-of-a-kind designer furniture. Particular attention is devoted to the most distinguished artists-designers, as well as the fates of furniture manufacturers and institutions. The volume examines the art-historical aspects of furniture manufacturing, sources of inspiration, types of materials and technological aspects. Profiles of eminent Czech and international furniture designers form an important part of the publication. The book also serves as a catalogue accompanying the permanent exhibition of 19th- and 20th-century furniture intended for study purposes, housed in the chateau in Kamenice nad Lipou in the Bohemian-Moravian Highlands. The Language of Fibers – The Moravian Tapestry Manufactory in Valašské Meziříčí 1898–1938)
The publication offers a new look at the beginnings of production in the Moravian Tapestry Manufactory, one that contextualizes the age, artistic trends and cultural relations of the early twentieth century. The names of the architects and designers discussed in the book (Jan Kotěra, Dušan Jurkovič, Hanuš Schweiger, among others) suggest that this is not merely a historical account of and isolated tapestry establishment, but rather an enriching insight into Czech textile art created between 1898 and 1938. The Modern Pictorialism of D. J. Ruzicka)
Moderní piktorialismus D. J. Růžičky
The most accomplished amateur photographers of the first half of the 20th century in the United States devoted themselves to Pictorialist photography. They actively sought artistic expression through beautiful, technically mastered images. Drahomír Josef Růžička, a physician who worked and lived in Manhattan, New York, held a prominent place among the Pictorialists who gained recognition after World War I. He was a founding member of such associations as the Pictorial Photographers of America and Pittsburgh Salon, and an inspirer of photographic club life throughout the country. New York was his favourite theme. Beginning in 1921, he regularly visited Czechoslovakia, where his approach to the photographic medium was regarded as revolutionary and where he stimulated the avant-garde movement in photography. The reproductions come from the collections of the Museum od Decorative Arts in Prague, the Moravian Gallery in Brno, the Jacques Baruch Gallery, and other institutions. The Nude in Czech Photography)
A monograph tracing the principal art movements, figures and works in Czech nude photography, from the daguerreotype all the way to the present. The book was published by KANT in collaboration with UPM as an accompaniment to an exhibition of the same name, hosted in Prague Castle‘s Imperial Stables from Dec. 1, 2000 through Feb. 4, 2001. The Poster in Europe / Europe in Posters)
The majority of posters date from the turn of the 20th century, when the decorative style known as Sezession in Vienna, Art Nouveau in Paris and Western Europe, and Jugendstil in Germany was at the height of popularity. The works reproduced were created not only in such cultural centres as Paris and Vienna, but also in various cities throughout Belgium, Germany and Italy. The second part is devoted to modernist art produced in the 1920s and early 1930s in France, Holland, Germany and Hungary. Thematically, the publication includes exhibition announcements, entertainment advertisements, tourist flyers and ads for newly emerging products of “mass consumption“, as well as for somewhat curious objects. The Radiance of Stillness and Motion: Bohemian Glass from the Collection of the Museum of Decorative)
Glass production began in Bohemia (an area corresponding roughly to the Czech Republic today) in the thirteenth century. Bohemian crystal developed in the latter half of the seventeenth century. Its shapes, which suggested carved rock crystal, became highly popular, even dislodging Venetian glass from its once-dominant position. In the early nineteenth century, research on ways to add colors and painted decorations led to the development of increasingly colorful glass. In contemporary glass art, Bohemian glass is the world leader in glass sculpture. This book includes about 170 examples from 600 years of Bohemian glass from the collection of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague. Treasures of Egypt: Textiles from the Czech and Moravian Collections)
The way people dressed in Antiquity, what kinds of fabrics they wore, what were the techniques they used, and how they decorated their clothes – all this is documented in the superb collection of Coptic textiles preserved in the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, and other Czech and Moravian collections. The bulk of these historical textiles dates from the 3rd to the 12th century A.D. The book contains a selection of Egyptian textiles that are currently the only comprehensive testimony to textile production in ancient times, the technical prowess of textile makers and the artistic execution of textile patterns. Most of all, these artefacts provide evidence of the clothing culture in Late Antiquity and early Christianity in the former Roman Empire, in the broader context of Greco-Roman cultural traditions.
The publication was issued to accompany the exhibition held under the auspices of UNESCO at the Prague Castle, April – August, 2000. Tschechische Fotografie des 20. Jahrhunderts)
The German language book of Vladimír Birgus and Jan Mlčoch examines the individual movements and tendencies in photography throughout the 20th century. These include early-century styles (Pictorialism, documentary and reportage photography), modern photographic trends of the twenties, Surrealist experimentation and Poetism, postwar reportage and documentary photography, art photography and its various offshoots (The Happening, Land Art, Conceptual Art and Body Art), to staged and portrait photography of the late 20th century. Almost two hundred photographers have been selected, among them Josef Sudek, František Drtikol, Jaromír Funke, Jaroslav Rössler, Karel Hájek, Václav Jírů, Vilém Reichmann, Jan Reich, Jan Saudek, Josef Koudelka, and others. The reproductions of images lent from Czech and foreign collections offer a complex overview of 20th-century photography in the Bohemian lands. Two Phenomena of European Glass: Venetian and Bohemian Glass)
Glassmaking is an age-old craft that spread from the ancient empires of the Middle East via Greece and the Roman Empire to the West. However, only two places on the map of Europe mastered the secret of glass manufacture, grasping its every detail and enhancing it to unprecedented heights of beauty admired to this day: Venice, Italy, or, more precisely, the Island of Murano, and Bohemia in Central Europe. Two heirs of the ancient techniques that both locations developed in the modern times with the decorative principles of the Renaissance and Baroque periods. Una ventana en Praga. Josef Sudek. Fotografías de los aňos cincuenta (A Window in Prague. Josef Sude)
The Spanish-language exhibition catalogue features photographs of Prague created by Josef Sudek in the 1950s, particularly his "Night" images. The nightscapes are accompanied by panoramas of the historical centre, glimpses of the city’s everyday life, shots taken from the artist’s studio, and still-life photographs. A folding leaflet with a foreword to the exhibition and a list of exhibits is appended to the catalogue. Une rose pour Josef Sudek)
This exhibition catalogue delineates the contours of the rich photographic legacy of Josef Sudek, housed in UPM’s collection. The specific style of Sudek’s oeuvre is characterized by intimate themes, mostly simple, everyday objects. In his photographs, Sudek skilfully visualized the subject of the natural world, thus enhancing the viewers’ perception of daily reality and understanding of photography.
The catalogue was issued to accompany the exhibition held on the occasion of Europalia 98 in Palais des Beaux-Arts, Charleroi (Belgium), October – December, 1998. Václav Cigler)
Design – Profiles – Key Figures edition series
Václav Cigler (* 1929), artist and designer of word renown, famous above all for his pioneering optical glass sculptures. He was a technological visionary who also applies his ideas to utility glass design, lighting systems, jewellery and pneumatic structures. This book is the first publication to provide period context to Cigler’s works. The book places special emphasis on drawing as the key technique for understanding Cigler’s multifaceted oeuvre. Vidrio Español del Museo de Artes Decorativas in Praga)
The UPM holds a unique collection of 16th- to 18th-century Spanish glass, with its most valuable examples shown in 2002 in La Granja de San Ildefonso, near Segovia. Some of the glass vessels from the Prague collection had been produced in the former glassworks Real Fábrica de Cristales de La Granja, now the seat of the glass museum Museo Tecnológico del Vidrio. After the glassworks was established, glassmakers from Germany, France and the Kingdom of Bohemia flocked to it. Pavel Štěpánek, a specialist in Hispanic studies, finds further parallels between Bohemian and Spanish glass production in glass-making techniques and types of decoration. Contacts between Spanish and Bohemian glass production were enhanced by the intensive trade between the Kingdom of Spain and the Bohemian lands.
The catalogue was issued by the Fundación Centro Nacional del Vidrio and Ministerio de Educación Cultura y Deporte (Spain) in cooperation with the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague to accompany the exhibition in the Real Fábrica de Cristales de la Grancha, May 2002 – January 2003. Vital Art Nouveau 1900)
from the Collections of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague
The publication is devoted to key works of the Czech and European Art Nouveau style from the collections of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague. It examines decorative art of the Art Nouveau period as part of the ground-breaking modernization and emancipation trends of the Fin de siècle that brought changes in interior and fashion design, introduced new forms and styles in glass and ceramics, and gave rise to a modern visual language in advertising. Art Nouveau art sought inspiration in biology and social reform theories, life philosophies and studies of occult sciences. All these components made up a remarkably vital art movement that invigorated 20th-century avant-garde art. Vojtěch Baron Lanna: Collector, Patron and Entrepreneur)
Vojtěch Lanna – svobodný pán, sběratel, mecenáš a podnikatel
The publication focuses on Bohemia’s most outstanding patron of the arts and culture and co-founder of the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague. Vojtěch Lanna (1836 České Budějovice – 1909 Merano) was an industrialist, building construction entrepreneur, art collector of European stature and a patron of numerous cultural institutions. He was instrumental in the construction of Bohemia’s railroad system and was also involved in river regulation, namely of the Vltava (Moldau). During his life in Prague, he amassed a unique corpus of works of fine art and decorative arts, an important part of which is now in the holdings of UPM, where it constitutes the museum’s core collections. The book contains a biographical study, including the history of the Lanna company, discussed against the backdrop of Vojtěch Lanna’s relationship to the Museum of Decorative Arts. A separate chapter describes his tenure in the Society of Patriotic Friends of the Arts and the art works housed in the National Gallery in Prague. The nucleus of the publication consists of chapters devoted to the individual fields of decorative arts (glass, ceramics, metalwork, furniture, textiles), represented in UPM’s holdings that come from the original Lanna collection. Vojtěch Preissig)
The first book from the library edition Design – Profiles – Key Figures
The work of Vojtěch Preissig (1873–1944), one of the most accomplished Czech graphic artists of the first half of the 20th century, encompasses a broad range of fields and types of graphic design and decorative art, beginning with occasional prints (posters, invitation cards, announcements, New Year cards, bookplates), followed by book and magazine illustrations, ornamental designs and patterns (universal vignettes, decorative borders, flyleafs), all the way to typography. Against the backdrop of Preissig’s extraordinary life marked by turning points in history, the book describes the artist’s most important creative stages that brought him specific assignments, offered various opportunities and determined his artistic orientation: namely, his art studies in Paris, his own studio’s art projects, move to the United States, involvement in the First Resistance Movement, teaching career at the Wentworth Institute of Technology, graphic work for US printing and publishing companies, collaboration with the State Printing House in Prague, return to Czechoslovakia and engagement in the Second Resistance Movement. Vojtěch Preissig: For the Republic!)
Vojtěch Preissig, a prominent Czech artist of the early 20th century, devoted his art and craftsmanship in graphic design to courageous service to his nation. He designed number of posters, brochures, leaflets, prints, designs and printing plates during the first and second resistance. The core of the collection consists of a number of legionary recruitment posters, exceptional in the world in terms of their artistic qualities, impressiveness and sophisticated expression. Preissig made in his workplace at Wentworth Institute in Boston also posters for the American army and other printed materials as well as designs of the Czechoslovak flag.