The Obecni Dum, or Municipal House, on the square Namesti Republiky is not only a stunning example of art nouveau architecture, but also an important venue for Czech art exhibitions. It is currently exhibiting the drawings of early 20th century Czech sculptor Otto Gutfreund. The drawings are on loan from the Moravian Gallery in Brno, which has been collecting the sculptor's drawings over the past few decades. The drawings, in conjunction with excerpts from the sculptor's diary, provide illumination into the methods of this internationally renowned
I am standing in the main departure hall of Prague's main train station. Right to me a group of homeless men is staring into nowhere, drinking cheap wine ... fast food stands scattered around are offering rather overpriced refreshment. Not a welcoming sight ... Dark, dirty corners and hallways have given the main train station a bad reputation. It is now perceived as a dangerous and disgusting place. You wouldn't want to spend too much time here. It would be difficult to find a single person, local or foreign, who would be proud of this gateway
The building of a major new building for the Czech National Library looks set to be one of the most important architectural projects in Prague this decade. Financing has just been approved by the Czech parliament, which has also agreed to fund extensive renovations to the National Library's current home in the city-centre Clementinum complex.
Last month it came to light that Tesco, the owner of the original Maj building in the centre of Prague, was considering demolishing the famous department store in favour of a newer building. Maj, in its original form, has stood on the corner of Narodni and Spalena Streets since 1975 - and then - as now - is one of Prague's best-known shopping centres. Consequently, many Czechs - but also a number of important architects- say it would be a mistake if the building were pulled down.
In today's Czechs in History we look at one of the most illustrious periods of the kingdom of Bohemia - the rule of the Luxembourgs - reflected in an important exhibition now underway at Prague Castle: Charles IV - Emperor by the Grace of God. The exhibit, which had an immensely successful run last autumn at New York's Metropolitan Museum opened in Prague mid-February to great expectations. Opening the exhibit curator Jiri Fajt explained the period of the Luxembourgs, between 1347 and 1437, was among the most artistically important the kingdom
Last week saw the opening of a major exhibition devoted to the 14th century king and emperor, Charles IV, at Prague Castle. It brings together priceless works from dozens of museums in fifteen countries, and covers not only the reign of Charles IV himself, but the whole period when the Luxembourg dynasty ruled the Czech lands in the 14th and 15th centuries. But some objects from that time were simply too large to be transported to Prague Castle. They are on show at a separate exhibition at the National Museum's Lapidarium in Prague 7.
Already it is being called the cultural event of 2006 as well as one of the most important exhibitions in Prague ever: Charles IV: Emperor by the Grace of God, now open at Prague Castle. The exhibition, which had a first leg run at New York's Metropolitan Museum in the autumn, brings together rare works from more than 90 galleries, museums, and private collections in 15 countries, capturing the period between 1347 and 1437 - the time of the Luxemburg dynasty.
The Charles Bridge is undoubtedly one of Prague's most visited tourist sights, with around 20 million visitors crossing it every year. Having survived the floods which swept the city in 2002, the magnificent Gothic structure is currently in need of restoration to ensure its safety and to preserve it for future generations. But such a project is not without controversy, potentially affecting visitors at the height of the tourist season.
Today we meet Jan Kaplicky, who is regarded by many as the greatest Czech architect of his generation. Readers in the UK will surely know his amazing Selfridges building in Birmingham. But although Jan Kaplicky has won world renown for the work of his London-based company Future Systems, he has found himself somewhat at odds with the establishment here in the Czech Republic. Mr Kaplicky was born in Prague in 1937, and when we met recently he first told me something about his family background.
If Prague's Veletrzni Palac or Trade Fair Palace didn't house the modern art collection of the National Gallery, most of us would probably not notice the large building that stands just a few metres away from the city's exhibition complex. But the Palace is one of Prague's earliest and largest buildings in the Functionalist style.
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