A picture by famous Czech 20th century photographer František Drtikol was sold at an auction at Prague's Mánes on Sunday for 1.85 million crowns (approximately 74,000 US dollars). The sale makes Drtikol's "The Bow" the most expensive photography ever to be sold at a Czech auction. The starting price of the picture was 500,000 crowns. A Portrait of Marguerite Neveux by Josef Šíma also went under the hammer on Sunday. The Ministry of Culture bought it for the National Gallery for 4.45 million crowns.
Czech writer Jan Němec is among 13 young European authors who have won the 2014 European Union Prize for Literature. Němec was recognized for his unusual debut novel about the renowned Czech photographer František Drtikol. Entitled A History of Light, the novel captures Drtikol’s complex personality, and follows his path from photography to eastern spirituality and Buddhism.
Christie’s auction house in New York sold works by famous 20th century Czech photographers Josef Sudek and Jaroslav Rössler for a total of 143,750 dollars, or 2.9 million crowns. Photographs by two other Czech greats František Drtikol and Jaromír Funk were not auctioned off. The works by the four artists were part of a larger private collection. František Drtikol nonetheless remains the top-selling Czech photographer abroad, with his photograph A Snow Wave having been sold for 312 thousand dollars six years ago in New York.
Sunday is the 130th anniversary of the birth of the internationally renowned Czech photographer František Drtikol. Drtikol, who studied in Munich, is known for his portraits, frequently of important people, and nudes, with his use of geometric decorations and shadows in composite portraits of nudes reflecting avant-garde trends in the interwar period. While interested in esoteric philosophy, he was also an active member of the Communist Party in the latter years of his life.
In this week’s Arts, we have a round-up of recent stories from the Czech arts scene. In this edition: how a new project called Artbanka is helping emerging young artists in the Czech Republic and Slovakia; the highly-respected Prague theatre Dejvické divadlo launches a new play based on the life of early 20th Czech adventurer Jan “Eskimo” Welzl; and a precious B&W photograph by František Drtikol – stolen two weeks ago – is returned to Prague’s Museum of Decorative Arts.
Photographer František Drtikol’s most famous photograph The Wave which was stolen from the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague is back in its place, the CTK news agency reported on Wednesday. The photograph was returned by the police and its authenticity has been verified. The unknown thief reportedly tried to sell the work of art in California where the owner of a gallery noticed that it was on the international list of stolen art.
A rare photograph was stolen from Prague’s Museum of Industrial Art at the weekend by an unknown thief. The photograph, and black-and-white nude called Wave by internationally renowned photographer František Drtikol, was found missing from a permanent exhibition on Monday morning. The museum says that the photograph has been assessed for insurance purposes at 1.2 million crowns, but that its artistic value was incalculable. František Drtikol’s work sells at auction for more than that of any other Czech photographer.
Frantisek Drtikol was one of the most important Czech photographers of the 20th century. His early work was influenced by Art Nouveau and he was a master of light, line and balance. This week a travelling exhibition titled Eyes Wide Open was opened in the small town of Pribram, south-west of Prague, where Drtikol was born. As Jan Velinger now reports the show is slated to be a great success, bringing to light some lesser-known works from private collections the broader public may have not seen before.