Prepictures: Jan Svoboda & fellows
with Dalibor Chatrný / Lukáš Jasanský and Martin Polák / Tereza
Běla Kolářová / Jiří Kovanda / Stanislav Kolíbal / Jan Merta / Dušan Šimánek / Jiří Thýn
curated by Pavel Vančát
23.2. – 21.5.2022
** THE SHOW IS OPEN ONLY BY APPOINTMENT**
Already in 1968, Jan Svoboda, in collaboration with the historian of photography Anna Fárová, prepared a limited edition of four of his photographs for sale, which, according to the recollections of his wife Anna, was only partially finished. We decided to revive this idea with a new edition of Svoboda's photographs, which was prepared in cooperation with the late photographer's family and curator Pavel Vančát. The photographer Tereza Kabůrková took the utmost care in creating the new prints on barite paper, in dimensions exactly corresponding to the original exhibition originals. The new edition of Svoboda's works should not only fill a gap in the market, where quality originals of his works are rarely available, but also revive the legacy of one of the most important Czech artists of the 1960s and 1970s.
While preparing an exhibition presenting the new edition of Svoboda's works, we have tried to find his „fellow travellers“ whose works can reflect, expand, and shift the established reading of Svoboda's photographs. The central theme of the exhibition is the attempt to build the photographic image as an autonomous surface, adequate to the development of the modern image, but also the search for the boundary between photography, painting, and contemporary art. The selected artists belong to Svoboda's generational contemporaries and friends (Stanislav Kolíbal, Dalibor Chatrný, Běla Kolářová, Dušan Šimánek), to artists with complementary poetics from the gallery's circle (Jan Merta, Jiří Kovanda, Jasanský/Polák), or to the creators of contemporary „post-media“ photography (Jiří Thýn, Tereza Kabůrková). In playing with Svoboda's „prepictures“ and their reflections, we tried to bring fantasy, humour, and the possibility of reading his art with a new, more contemporary perspective and in a broader context.