28 October 2005 – 15 January 2006
The National Gallery in Prague, Trade Fair Palace, mezzanine recess
Dukelských hrdinů 47, 170 00 Prague 7
The exhibition is co-organized by the National Gallery in Prague, Collection of Modern and Contemporary Art, and Vernon Gallery.
Exhibition conception: Tomáš Drahoňovský, Helena Musilová, Milan Perič, Petr Písařík
Graphic design of printed materials: Jan Šerých, Štěpán Bartošek
National Gallery’s recess spaces in the Trade Fair Palace are traditionally reserved for exhibitions which map out the contemporary artistic scene in Czech lands, often presenting artists in unusual contexts and combinations. Although art work of two graduates from the Academy of Fine Arts – Petr Písařík and Milan Perič – exhibited this time in the mezzanine recess, may differ from each other at first sight, these artists share wide scope of approaches: they both are painters, sculptors and installation artists whose works can be sometimes only hardly given clear label.
Petr Písařík – student of Stanislav Kolíbal’s studio at the Academy of Fine Arts and member of social and objectual art group Pondělí [Monday] which was active at the turn of the 1980s and 1990s – has always focused on the fascinating world of contemporary fashion and on the sheer number of designer’s (as well as “priceless“) objects around us – see, for example, his painting series dealing with well-known initials and logotypes like Adidas, Hugo Boss and others. He has always surprised both art critics and the public by his totally unusual way of artistic expression. In the course of his artistic career, he has been involved in creating “beautiful” spatial objects and abstract paintings of striking colour palette.
The exhibition presented in the mezzanine recess of the Trade Fair Palace – space which, too, plays a significant role in the installation – presents mainly objects of everyday use (made of toys, souvenirs and other common objects) like chandeliers, lamps, flower-pots, or bags. Písařík’s objects reflect the visual appearance or visual chaos of today’s society of consumption. They moreover echo the inter-war avantgarde movement in Czech lands – works of Dadaism, Devětsil [The Butterbur] art group, Zdenek Rykr and Zdeněk Pešánek. Albeit Písařík’s works of art seem to be banal and to play solely with pop-culture objects, their gentle humor and irony show how deeply we are concerned about things which we in fact do not need at all.
Art work of Milan Perič – painter, sculptor, conceptual artist, poet and performer and member of the Svárov Association – is in close harmony with the program of the Intermedia School at the Academy of Fine Arts where “it depends the most on the selection of means of expression, [...] i.e. especially on the selection which is non-traditional – which does not mean only selecting from amongst media that have been already incorporated into the field of the arts, but from means of all kinds. Here, we assume the non-existence of borderlines between the so-called artistic and non-artistic fields. The supreme (and, in fact, the only) criterion in selecting such means is the effort to arrive at maximum expression and multilayered character of one’s own work.” In the 1980s, Perič was involved mainly in painting (for example, cycle “Angels of the Last Judgment”), and, from the 1990s also in installations, objects and performances (Trasmutation, installation Ravens and others). His most significant undertaking of that time were, however, his so-called Svárov Confrontations (first in 1986), held on the farm belonging to Perič’s family. Due to their structure as well as to vast number of visitors arriving from the ranks of independent artists, they became one of the most important events of the period underground movement.
This exhibition presents mainly Perič’s paintings from recent years. The dominant feature are cycles “Demons” and “Christ and Antichrist”. Portraits of imaginary figures are of unified proportions (with their heads always present) but they differ in color scale as well as in shading and form. The arrangement of the varied picture types reveals the substantial motif of the post-modern era – “one subject rendered in most varied ways”. Other exhibited works are canvases from the cycle “Mushrooms” (2003–2004) which combine the up-to-date inclination to everyday objects while at the same time paying attention to details and revealing unexpected connections with the popular subject of the so-called mushrooms – the alternative means of breaking into “other worlds”.
Písařík and Perič are respected artists in the Czech Republic and are well-established on the local artistic scene. They have participated in or have prepared numerous group and solo exhibitions and presentations.
Born 1968 Jindřichův Hradec, the Czech Republic
Studies 1983 1987 Secondary School of Arts and Crafts, Uherské Hradiště, the Czech Republic
1987 1994 Academy of Fine Arts in Prague, the Czech Republic (with Professor Stanislav Kolíbal)
Field of activity Freelance artist
Born 1957 Prague, the Czech Republic
Studies 1986 1987 Academy of Fine Arts in Prague, Landscape Painting (with Professor Jiří Karmazín)
1990 1993 Academy of Fine Arts in Prague, Studio of Intermedia Work (with Professor Milan Knížák)
Field of activity From 1995 works as assistant lecturer of Milan Knížák’s Studio of Intermedia Work at the Academy of Fine Arts
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Daily except Mondays, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Contact for journalists:
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