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NewsKaplický’s widow excited by plan to build Blob on Prague island

07-03-2014 11:40 | Ian Willoughby

The widow of architect Jan Kaplický has discussed the building of one of his designs with the mayor of Prague 8, Lidovky.cz reported. The large, futuristic structure, originally conceived as a new National Library building to stand on Letná Plain and nicknamed the Blob, could be built on the city’s Rohanský Island, under a proposal from Culture Minister Daniel Herman backed by a wealthy developer. After a meeting with Prague 8 mayor Jiří Janků, Eliška Kaplický said she liked the idea of the project being realised on Rohanský Island, in part because it is by Karlín, an area that has seen a lot of new architecture in recent years. 

Czech HistoryThe Clementinum, the Baroque pearl of Prague

04-01-2014 02:01 | Christian Falvey

Photo: archive of Radio Prague Standing in the centre of the Clementinum – if you can locate such a thing in the labyrinth – you are surrounded by around a millennium of history and millions of volumes of books inside one of the most beautifully preserved masterpieces of Baroque art the city of Prague has to offer. This is the seat of the Czech National Library and the whispering and rustling that echoes through its grand halls add perfectly to its natural mysteriousness.  More

NewsFirst complete Czech version of Bible focus of Prague exhibition

11-09-2013 20:01 | Ian Willoughby

An exhibition focused on the Kralice Bible, the first complete Czech language translation of the book, has begun at the National Library’s Clementinum building in Prague. The show is timed to coincide with the 400th anniversary of the last publication of the Kralice Bible prior to the Battle of White Mountain. It includes earlier translations of the Bible in Czech and valuable documents that have not previously been displayed publicly.  

Current AffairsLendl’s unique Mucha collection goes on show in Prague

10-04-2013 15:07 | Ian Willoughby

Photo: CTK A much-anticipated exhibition of posters by the Czech Art Nouveau master Alfons Mucha has just opened its doors at the grand Municipal House in central Prague. The collection, which belongs to the Czech-born tennis legend Ivan Lendl, is the largest in the world and is being shown publicly for the first time ever.  More

Current AffairsPrague mayor renews “Blob” debate

04-10-2011 16:20 | Pavla Horáková

The design of the “Blob” The drawn-out debate over the construction of a futuristic building colloquially known as “the Blob” originally meant to house the Czech National Library in Prague has taken a new turn. Designed by the late Czech-born London-based architect Jan Kaplický, the huge green and purple structure divided public opinion when it won an international competition in 2007 and the project was finally scuppered. Now, more than four years after the original plan was put forward, Prague Mayor Bohuslav Svoboda has unexpectedly renewed the debate.  More

Czech HistoryThe Clementinum, the Baroque pearl of Prague

26-07-2011 16:03 | Christian Falvey

Standing in the centre of the Clementinum – if you can locate such a thing in the labyrinth – you are surrounded by around a millennium of history and millions of volumes of books inside one of the most beautifully preserved masterpieces of Baroque art the city of Prague has to offer. This is the seat of the Czech National Library and the whispering and rustling that echoes through its grand halls add perfectly to its natural mysteriousness.  More

NewsWater accident in National Library

21-07-2011 20:06 | Christian Falvey

Thousands of books are being moved from the Clementinum, which houses the National Library, after an accident left parts of the building flooded. The library has not said whether the cause is related to the heavy precipitation of recent days. More than 4,000 historical and foreign volumes had to be evacuated and the reference centre closed on Thursday as water ran into offices and gallery spaces. The water was quickly pumped away however the shelves are soaked. The affected areas will be opened again on August 8.  

NewsPecina to give up seat in Chamber of Deputies

19-03-2011 19:59 | Jan Velinger

In related news, the former interior minister Martin Pecina, unsatisfied with the results of the Social Democrat congress, has said he will give up his seat in the Chamber of Deputies. The MP told internet news website iDnes that he respected the result but would not keep his seat as he disagrees with the party's policy towards the coalition cabinet. He also made clear he had been given little room to operate within the top party leadership, either as a shadow cabinet minister or deputy leader. Mr Pecina had supported Michal Hašek for party chairman. The politician – who rose to prominence as the former head of the Czech National Library – said that while he would give up his post, he would not give up his membership in the Social Democratic Party.  

NewsDirector of national library rules out building Kaplický ‘blob’

05-01-2011 19:53 | Chris Johnstone

The project of renowned Czech architect Jan Kaplický for a new and futuristic national library building in Prague has been rejected by the new head of the library. Director Tomáš Böhm said that money for such a building, nicknamed the blob, was simply not available. He added that the library’s biggest priority at the moment was to tackle the shortage of storage space for its collection. A new library building might be thought about in five to 10 years with a new competition likely launched for the design, he said.  

NewsKaplický documentary wins prize at Warsaw festival

17-10-2010 20:33 | Jan Richter

The documentary “Eye above Prague”, by the Czech filmmaker Olga Špátová, won an award for the best documentary at the 26th Warsaw International Film Festival on Saturday. The documentary depicts the last two years in the life of the Czech-born architect Jan Kaplický, who passed away in January 2009, and whose project of a new National Library building for Prague was scrapped. The festival jury said the film captured the emotional state of a man who outran his times.  

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