A new documentary has just opened in Czech cinemas looking at the life of the country’s greatest jockey: eight-time Pardubice Steeplechase winner Josef Váňa. At 59, Váňa competed against riders more than half his age. The film “Váňa – The Greatest Race is Life Itself” reveals not only the racer’s success but the hard work behind all the victories.
Jaroslav Hašek is known the world over for his epic satirical novel, “The Good Soldier Švejk”. It tells of the adventures of a Czech soldier in the Austro-Hungarian army during World War I, drawing richly from the author’s own experiences. But Hašek was also a prolific writer of short stories. Even though he died before his fortieth birthday, he produced nearly fifteen hundred stories, and we can now enjoy a selection of these in English in a new translation by Mark Corner. David Vaughan reports.
A new festival called Proudy 2012 (or Currents 2012) organised by students for students (or generally anyone up to the age of 30 or so) kicks off later this month. The highly ambitious project, bringing together numerous schools from ČVUT to Charles University as well as the private sector, centres primarily on multimedia – an amalgam of live music, screen projections, live drawing, dance, and even silent disco, relying on a combination of technology from new apps to robotics. Entry is free and if you are interested in new media, Proudy 2012 is
According to an old Czech saying, ‘každý správný chlap’ (every real man) should at some point build a house, father a son, and plant a tree. Viktor Filipi, our guest in this edition of Czech Life, isn’t quite there yet in the first two departments but the last category he knows a lot about. The 24-year-old – a student in his final year in the Masters programme in Landscape Architecture at Mendel University – began working on his family’s garden more than ten years ago; just recently it was voted by readers of idnes as “the country’s most
Type design is an ancient art enjoying a renaissance in the computer age. The specificities of writing systems that were once passed down from master to apprentice can now be worked with by designers anywhere in the world who have the patience and the talent to take on a foreign script. One such designer is David Březina, one of the founders of the Brno type foundry Rosetta. In 2008 his Skolar type family received international recognition and he is now working on a font for the Gujarati writing system, used by over 60 million people in the Indian
If you have ever wondered about how 19th century Czech settlers lived on the Great Plains of the American Midwest, there is no better way to find out than by reading the novels of Willa Cather. David Vaughan looks at the Bohemian side of a classic American novelist who is surprisingly little known here in the Czech Republic.
Born in Prague, he lived in Brussels, Stuttgart, Cologne, and later London and Antwerp, meticulously recording his surroundings and reflecting the society around him in his art. Václav or Wenceslaus, or even Wenzel, Hollar sounds like a modern-day European artist, but he actually lived four hundred years ago. Although he was brought up to go into law, Hollar became an etcher and draughtsman, whose work now provides us with beautifully detailed depictions of the people, architecture, landscapes and even a battle that took place in Europe in the seventeenth
The 9th Fresh Film Fest opens in Prague on Wednesday celebrating new and debut films from around the world. This year’s installment of the festival features movies by British documentary maker Peter Watkins, Tom Tykwer and other Czech and international artists. The main theme of the Fresh Film Fest this year is Manipulation. Radio Prague spoke to the festival’s programme director Michal Hogenauer, and asked him what exactly this means.