Designblok, Prague International Design Festival opened today Prague. The festival, now in its ninetheenth year, boasts that it is the largest showcase of fashion and design in Central Europe. The event is mainly based in the historic Výstaviště Praha exhibition grounds, and will feature the works of 304 designers, this year guided by the overarching theme of food. I spoke with Bára Švehlová, PR manager for the event, and began by asking her to explain the theme of this year’s Designblok:
Prague’s Pink Tank, a symbol of the fall of communism in the country, has been installed at Komenský’s Square in Brno, as part of an exhibition organised by the Moravian Gallery. The tank, originally a monument to Soviet tank crews who liberated the city in 1945, was painted pink by the artist David Černý in 1991, and soon thereafter taken to a military museum outside Prague. On Thursday, the pink tank was put on display in Brno to be featured in an exhibition called Tribes 90, curated by Artist Vladimir 518.
The Czech art market has seen a record-breaking year, with the overall turnover at Czech auction houses exceeding 1.2 billion crowns, the ctk news agency reports. Compared to last year this is an increase by 331 million crowns, or 36 percent. The billion crown mark was crossed due to a number of exceptional sales at auctions at home and abroad. A painting by František Kupka broke the Czech art auction record, selling for 62 million crowns (around 2.29 million euros) at an auction in November and another painting by the same artist also set an international record, when it sold in Sweden for nearly 70 million crowns. Auctions of works by Oskar Kokoschka, Josef Šíma, Josef Čapek and Jan Zrzavý also contributed to the record turnover.
The Czech art market saw another record-breaking year in 2016. Although final data for the past year are not yet available, it is clear that the overall turnover at Czech auction houses will exceed one billion crowns. The favorable result was affected by a number of record-breaking sales both at Czech auctions and abroad. A painting by František Kupka broke the Czech art auction record, selling for 62 million crowns (around 2.29 million euros). Another painting by the same artist also set an international record, when it sold in Sweden for nearly
An exhibition of works by late architect Jan Kaplický will be launched at Prague’s Dancing House Gallery on Tuesday. The exhibition, called JKOK, will present Kaplický’s iconic works and designs, such as the 2007 model for the National Library, also known as the Blob, as well as some previously unseen works. The exhibits come from his personal archive. The exhibition will run until March 12, 2017. The Czech –born London-based architect Kaplický died in 2009 at the age of 71. His most significant projects include the Selfridges Building in Birmingham and the media centre of Lord's Cricket Ground in London.
A case involving the hoisting of a giant pair of red boxer shorts over Prague Castle is set to return to the Prague 1 District Court, Czech Television reported on Tuesday. An appeals court upheld an action taken by the state attorney’s office against a previous ruling by the District Court dismissing the case. Three members of the art group Ztohoven are accused of disorderly conduct, criminal damage and theft for illicitly removing the presidential flag above Prague Castle and replacing it with the red shorts last September in protest at the policies of President Miloš Zeman.
A unique book called Sistine Chapel, initiated by the Vatican Museums, has gone on presale in the Czech Republic. The limited three-volume edition was published worldwide in only 1999 copies, with 100 available on the Czech market. The Czech edition will cost 229,000 crowns in pre-sale and 339,000 in regular sale, which makes it the most expensive book ever to appear for sale in the Czech Republic.
Contemporary or New Circus has become far better established in the Czech Republic over the years thanks to the hugely popular annual festival Letní Letná (which returns in just a few weeks) and local troupes like La Putyka. But what you might not know is that there is also a centre for contemporary circus in Prague you can visit all year long, called Cirqueon. The centre strives not only to inform about New Circus but takes part in productions and offers youngsters the chance to learn gymnastic and theatrical skills.
The guerrilla arts group Ztohoven has said it has cut up a presidential standard into 1152 pieces that will be sent ad hoc to people across the Czech Republic. The group took down the presidential banner and replaced it with a giant pair of red underpants in a stunt in September last year. The group had gained access to Prague castle after dressing up as chimney sweeps. The court trial of the three, who could face prison terms of up to three years, starts on Wednesday. The fate of the presidential standard was for many months the subject of mystery to the outside world.