This February marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of one of the Czech Republic’s greatest animators, puppeteers and illustrators, Jiří Trnka. This milestone is being marked in the Czech Republic by the country’s National Film Archive; its Prague-based Ponrepo cinema screening a collection of Trnka’s films and documentaries about the artist until March 16th. Czech Centres around the globe – which exist to promote the Czech Republic - are also marking the anniversary heralding an exhibition called “Jiří Trnka: In the Service of the Imagination”
Krištof Kintera is one of the most respected contemporary Czech artists – he was recently given the title Artist of the Year – and his new exhibit offers an insight into his latest work. Provocative, whimsical and daring, the “Výsledky analýzy” show is one of the season’s most interesting exhibits. We take a look ahead of the opening.
Film has played an important role in Hana Kulhanková’s life ever since she was a teenager. Later, she studied film and worked at the Mezipatra Queer Film Festival, which showcases gay and lesbian filmmakers. Now, Hana Kulhánková is the director of one of Prague’s most colorful and interesting film festivals, One World, which focuses on human rights documentaries. Ahead of the start of this year’s edition, I spoke to her about the festival program, human rights and what initially piqued her interest in film.
Prague is the city of hundred spires and countless historic sights, but what does it look like when you close your eyes? A new project called Favourite Sounds of Prague attempts to draw attention to the “soundscape” of the Czech capital, exploring how local people perceive the sounds that surround them. One of the fruits of the project will be an archive of sounds, something like an acoustic portrait of the city. The man behind the idea is British artist Peter Cusack, who has carried out similar projects in several cities across the world. The Czech
Activists are holding a protest happening in front of Prague’s Pankrác prison, where Czech artist Roman Týc on Friday afternoon is starting a one-month prison sentence for a 2007 art project that involved defacing fifty traffic lights in Prague by changing the standard red and green figures to show them in situations such as drinking, urinating and hanging themselves. The artist says he chose prison time over paying a fine because otherwise he would be renouncing the project’s message. Titled “Bábovka pro Týce” or “A cake for Týc”, the happening
Something is in the air in Prague’s Old Town Hall: An exhibition titled “Other Air” gives the public a chance to see both a retrospective of Czech and Slovak surrealist art from the last two decades, as well as surrealist works from renowned international artists. In addition, the exhibition features a rich accompanying program with surrealist films and readings and a bilingual catalogue with surrealists texts. The ambitious project kicked off in February and will be running in the Czech capital until April. We spoke to artist and member of the
When Tomáš Zmeškal’s first novel was published four years ago, one critic described it in ecstatic terms as a “gold vein amid the deadwood of contemporary Czech scribbling”. The book, A Love Letter in Cuneiform Script, went on to win the coveted European Union Prize for Literature last year and Tomáš Zmeškal has won international acclaim, although we are still waiting for either of his two novels published so far to appear in English. David Vaughan talks to the writer.
Director Miloš Forman celebrates his 80th birthday on Saturday, and newspapers in his native country are full of tributes. In the small category of Czech artists who have conquered the world, Forman has a seat among the likes of Antonín Dvořák and Milan Kundera and Czechs are dulely proud of him for his success. But his approach to filmmaking and style of direction also permanently altered the course of cinematography in the Czech Republic and elsewhere, a fact we discussed earlier with Karel Och, the artistic director of the Karlovy Vary International