For the third year now, the Moravian capital Brno is hosting an international event that brings together representatives of various nationalities, cultures and faiths. The festival titled Meeting Brno features discussions, exhibitions, concerts, walks, screenings and much more, in an effort to prove that the city whose multicultural history was severed by the horrors and aftermaths of WWII is embracing its past and looking forward into the future.
Within this year’s Meeting Brno festival people will be invited to vote
on which woman from Czech history would most deserve to have a statue
erected in her memory in the Brno metropolis.
The festival organizers want to draw attention to the fact that the vast majority of statues in town honour male politicians, scientists or writers. On the list of female candidates are Queen Eliška Rejčka, who founded a hospital in Brno, Franciscan nun Maria Restituta, who was executed by the Nazis or one of the most popular Czech female composers Vítězslava Kaprálová.
Meeting Brno takes place every year in late May and offers a platform for people of different views, cultures and religions to meet and address various isues. The festival include public readings, theater and music performances, visual arts and discussion forums.
The Prague 6 authorities have said they will place a plaque at the statue
of Soviet Marshal Ivan Konev, erected in commemoration of his role in
helping to liberate Czechoslovakia from Nazi oppression, which would put
into better perspective his role in history. The plaque is to be ready by
the end of June and should help prevent the statue’s repeated
Marshal Konev is a controversial figure in the Czech Republic, since as well as liberating the country in WWII, he was involved in the suppression of the Hungarian uprising in 1956 and was also present in Berlin for the construction of the Berlin Wall in 1961.
His statue has been spray painted in protest on several occasions in recent years, most recently on V-day when the dates 1956 and 1961 appeared on the statue in red paint.
Czechs will join millions of people around the globe in turning off their
lights for 60 minutes on Saturday night starting at 8:30pm local time in a
symbolic show of support for the Earth Hour campaign against climate
Earth Hour will dim some of Prague’s best known landmarks including Prague Castle, Charles Bridge, Old Town Square or the Žižkov TV tower.
Prague and other cities around the Czech Republic first marked Earth Hour in 2012. Thirteen cities and eighty towns and villages are expected to join the campaign this year.
A European Parliament building in Strasbourg has been named after the late Czech president, dissident and playwright Václav Havel. A bronze bust of the first Czech president was unveiled at the entrance to the building in the presence of Havel’s wife Dagmar and the head of the European Parliament Antonio Tajani. Visitors were also able to view an exhibition of photos of Václav Havel taken by Tomki Němec. The main conference room in the building is furnished with a tapestry by Czech artist Petr Sís.
The renowned Czech sculptor Olbram Zoubek died on Thursday at the age of 91. The news was confirmed by the head of the National Film Archive Michal Bregant. Zoubek is known for numerous important works, including a memorial to the victims of the communist regime at Prague's Újezd. In 1969, Mr Zoubek cast the death mask of student Jan Palach, who used self-immolation to protest against the Soviet-led invasion of Czechoslovakia.
As of Wednesday, visitors to Prague have been able to admire a monumental statue by Turner Prize winner Tony Cragg. The bronze object is installed at Náměstí Republiky square in the centre of the city as part of the annual summer festival called Sculpture Line. In all, 22 works by Czech and foreign artists are on view all around the city throughout the summer months.
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.