The journal is included in Web of Science (ISI Web of Knowledge) | Scopus | EBSCO | ARTbibliographies Modern | Design and Applied Arts Index | European Science Foundation (European Index for the Humanities – ERIH)



Petr Šámal

Necudní naháči z řeckého Olympu. Nahé tělo v architektonickém dekoru Prahy 19. a počátku 20. století

Shameless nudes from the Greek Olympus. The naked body in Prague architectural decoration of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th centuries

pp. 2–25

The naked human body is one of the classical but controversial themes in art. This text deals with its use in the decoration of architecture. Depiction of the naked body has been the subject of many theoretical studies, but in these the decoration of buildings has been wrongfully neglected. It nevertheless represented an important basis for the cultivation of nude figures and their confrontation with the wider public, especially in urban building in the second half of the 19th and first half of the 20th centuries.The text investigates the gradual inclusion of ‘nude statues’ (i.e. unclothed or partly clothed figures) in the architecture of Prague. Public buildings played an important part in this process, but it was tenement buildings that became the main platform for naked figures. The article seeks the reasons for their profusion and finds them in the combination of iconographic traditions, the developing cult of the body and art-technological causes. It handles the effort to censor naked statues exceeding conventions not only from the viewpoint of the nudity per se, but also from the viewpoint of gender customs: the depiction of the naked female body had a strong tradition, but this was not the case for the male body and in the case of the combination of the bodies of both genders; in the analysis of their viewing it is also essential to take into consideration the gender of the onlookers — the passers-by. Although nude statues became a normal part of Prague around 1900, at this time there was an intervention in the appearance of the naked male figures on the façade of the Main Station; the enforced replacement of genitalia by fig leaves was due to the gender factors mentioned. Nude statues had their political connotations, which appeared with the arrival of the Young Czech Partyat the head of the Prague municipality (1906), when changes took place in the attitude to naked statues on public architecture. Even in 1925, however, the figures on the façade of the State Medical Institute had to be altered due to their nudity at the instigation of a clerically-minded minister and their case was used in the pre-election struggle. Due to nude statues in the decoration of buildings, interventions took place in cultural models of the time which contributed to changes in the perception of the depiction of the naked human body in art.

< back
| summary |

Jakub Hauser

„Co kde mezi ruskou emigrací zůstalo krásného, to vše sem pietně sneseno." Výtvarná sbírka Ruského kulturně-historického muzea

‘Whatever remained beautiful in Russian emigration has all been reverently collected here.’ The Art Collection of the Russian Cultural-historical Museum in Zbraslav (1935–1945)

pp. 26–46

The Russian Cultural-historical Museum, located in the Zbraslav Chateau in the years 1935–1945, is an important phenomenon of the history of emigration from the territory of the former Russian Empire. The motivation for the establishment of this institution, initiated by the Tolstoyan writer Valentin Fyodorovich Bulgakov and founded under the canopy of the Russian Free University in Prague, had roots in the widely implemented concept of emigration as the bearer of authentic Russian culture, the continuation of which was only possible outside the Soviet Union. The need for the continuity of pre- revolutionary culture was reflected in the efforts to define its principles and also to collect documents of the activity of Russian communities in exile. This approach was also projected into the form of the art collection of the Zbraslav Russian Museum, which did take shape to a considerable extent by chance, but nevertheless its composition — especially after Bulgakov’s acquisition trip to Paris in 1937 — showed a clear attempt to present primarily the work of artists whose names had entered general awareness already on the art scene of prerevolutionary Russia and who belonged in part to the circle of the group known as Mir iskusstva (World of Art). The activity of the museum gradually intensified with the establishment of a separate architecture gallery and the opening to the public of a room dedicated to the work of Nikolai Roerich and culminated before the outbreak of the Second World War in the publication of an ambitious catalogue entitled Russkoye iskusstvo za rubezhom (Russian Art Abroad). The article deals with the formation of the museum’s art collection, its acquisition strategy and the development of exhibitions up to the time when the museum was moved out of the Zbraslav Chateau, the effort to reconstruct a smaller version of the museum in the building of the Soviet Secondary School in Prague at Pankrác and the subsequent export of its collection to the Soviet Union, where the original Prague collection was in part divided up among several collection-forming institutions and in part lost. It traces the role played by Valentin Bulgakov in these events and also mentions the problematical reflection of the theme in contemporary Russian-language historiography.

< back
| summary |

Ondřej Hojda

A Bewildering Affinity: European Architectural Modernism and Japanese Traditional Building after World War II

Matoucí spřízněnost. Japonské tradiční stavění a evropští modernističtí architekti po druhé světové válce

pp. 47–63

Emerging European Modernist architecture in the 1920s and 1930s apparently shared certain principles with Japanese traditional building: The principles and qualities that Modernism strove for — ‘asymmetrical plan’, ‘flexibility of the interior space’, ‘modularity,’ ‘naked materials,’ seemed to have existed in Japan for hundreds of years. Writers such as Tetsurō Yoshida in The Japanese House and Garden, published 1935 in German, emphasised these similarities and presented the Japanese tradition in a distinctly Modernist manner. After World War II as Modernism became dominant in the West Japanese traditional building became a prominent and lively subject of the architectural discourse. We can follow this in the architectural press, which is also the main source of the research presented here. The wave of interest culminated between the mid-1950s and the early 1960s. But why exactly was Japan so attractive for European architects at this particular time? Were Japanese traditional principles an object of a purposeful misreading? And, more generally, what significance did this encounter have for Modern architecture in the West? The essay first brings an introduction to the phenomenon and pinpoints the important moments in its development. It then looks closer at the way European architects interpreted Japan and its relationship to the current development of Modern architecture, namely on the ambiguous role of history in this discourse. Within a broader comparison of concurrent ideas on Japan, the main focus is on the writings of Erwin A. Gutkind, Walter Gropiu s, and Bernard Rudofsky. Finally, the essay suggests an interpretation: Did the Japanese tradition serve as a ‘prosthetic history’ of Modernism?

< back
| summary |


Rastislav Rusnák

Madonna and Child from Košice. Reflections of the Italian Renaissance in the Find of a Relief Mould

Madona s dítětem. Odraz italské renesance v nově nalezené reliéfní formě

pp. 64–72

This study examines the archaeological find of a clay mould of a relief with the motif of the Madonna and Child from Košice. The final product for which the mould was intended was a relief in either terracotta or stucco. This interpretation of the artefact would draw our attention towards Renaissance Italy, and more particularly to Tuscany and Florence. The study will attempt to identify the conceptual and compositional forms of the Košice find directly within the context of Renaissance Florence and to explain the means by which they could have reached the territory of the Kingdom of Hungary in the second half of the 15th century and the beginning of the 16th century. The basic compositional models of the depicted figures can be found in the works of the prominent Italian Renaissance artists, Ghiberti, Donatello and Luca della Robbia. In their works we can find a greater degree of simplicity, lightness and subtlety in their means of expression. The Košice find shares this style of intimate composition and economical and austere portrayal and therefore, at least on a theoretical level, it is possible to search for the broader scope of its conceptualization in selected works of the afore-mentioned artists. In subsequent generations of Florentine artists, the aesthetics of the depicted scene underwent slight variations. The fact that the Košice Madonna and Child shows no response to these aesthetic changes is surprising especially when we consider that the specific generation of artists such as Andrea del Verrocchio, Benedetto da Maiano and Gregorio di Lorenzo are associated with the development of the Renaissance at the court of the Kingdom of Hungary. The existence of a workshop in Košice producing luxury ceramic goods of which the discovered relief mould forms a part can be dated to the first and second decades of the 16th Century. The mould could have formed part of the equipment of an itinerant Italian craftsman or possibly a local artist with direct working experience of Italy. It is apparent that in his attempt to imitate original works, the artist has chosen to fall back on one of the archetypes of the genre rather than to build on the aesthetics of the depiction of the scene which were typical of the period in which many Italian artists were active in the workshops of the Hungarian court.

< back
| summary |

Jana Zapletalová — Alessandro Nesi

The Painting by Ulisse Ciocchi from the Archbishops' Collection in Kroměříž

Obraz Ulisse Ciocchiho z arcibiskupské sbírky v Kroměříži

pp. 73–80

The painting of Christ as the Good Shepherd among Angels from the chateau in Kroměříž was purchased in 1901 from an antiques dealer in Rome, Othmar Schmidt, by the Olomouc Archbishop Theodor Kohn, who was trying to enlarge the painting collection of the Olomouc Archbishops with new acquisitions. The painting soon lost its original attribution to Parmigianino, under whose name it was purchased in Rome, and until now it has been listed as the work of a Venetian-Dutch painter. In this article we have a new attribution of the painting to the Tuscan artist Ulisse Ciocchi (circa 1570–1631), a pupil and colleague of Bernardino Poccetti (1548–1612). The wooden panel is painted on both sides. The front depicts the Resurrected Christ as the Good Shepherd, surrounded on each side by a trio of beautifully clothed Angels playing various musical instruments. Within the framework of Ciocchi’s work we can find a parallel on the iconographic side to this quite uniquely formed theme, situated in a landscape that is northern in tone. The same scene, although treated differently, was created by the painter using the mural technique in the years 1613–1614 in the former Dominican Convent of San Jacopo di Ripoli in Florence. At the request of six Sisters of the Order he painted in 1614 a picture for the main altar of Saint James Baptising Josiah shortly before his Execution. The six lilies along the lower edge are a reference to the six nuns who financed the painting on the occasion of their consecration. In the case of the Kroměříž painting the question arises of whether the painting does not contain some analogous hidden symbolism. The six women who had decided to dedicate their lives to Christ would, under his pastoral guidance, just like the Angels, emanate beautiful music, i.e. spread the faith, just as pure lilies give out a beautiful scent. Christ would then, figuratively speaking, accompany the novices through their spiritual life as the Good Shepherd. On the reverse side of the panel Ulisse Ciocchi depicted the family coat of arms of a so-far unidentified member of the Birago family. With regard to the dimensions of the panel and the fact that the scenes on the front and back are depicted in reverse, it may be assumed that the painting formed the lid of some keyboard instrument or possibly of some kind of chest.

< back
| summary |

Barbora Řepková

Sen o stadionu. Dlouhá cesta ke stavbě plaveckého stadionu v Praze-Podolí

The Stadium Dream. The long journey to the building of the Swimming Stadium in Prague-Podolí

pp. 81–90

A swimming stadium, as opposed to bathing pools and leisure pools, must include a fifty-metre Olympic pool, a diving tower and stands for onlookers, all this ideally also in a covered winter variant. The construction of such a facility in our capital city took a surprisingly long time. The article first traces some unrealised intentions for the construction of a swimming complex and also recalls the well-known pool at Barrandov, the glory of which, however, did not last long. The stadium that finally fully satisfied the requirements for the functional aspects of the building was opened on the site of former cement works in Podolí in 1965 on the occasion of the 3rd State- wide Spartakiada. The development of the intention to construct this stadium is presented by means of archive materials, unrealised projects and reflections in the press of the time, which shed light on the practical and political circumstances that influenced the project and its realisation. Richard Ferdinand Podzemný, the author of realised project, remains best known for his work between the wars, mainly residential housing. The Stadium in Podolí does show signs of his functionalist training, but in the organic form of its widespan roofing it had also introduced into Czech architectural discourse fresh themes from contemporary western practice. The dynamic wave characterising the building is the result of an unusual combination of the roof of the hall containing the covered pool with the load-bearing construction of the outdoor stand. This article debates the possible stimulus for this design, which may have been acquaintance with two buildings in Rome — the entrance hall of the Termini Station (1950) and the Olympic Stadium Flaminio (1959). Even a simple comparison with these significant foreign buildings suggests how valuable the construction in question in fact is. In spite of the undoubted urbanist, architectural and technical qualities of the entire site, this complex, which has been in use for over fifty years, is yet to be protected by heritage listing.

< back
| summary |


Patrik Farkaš

The Last Will of Jakob Bogdani (1658-1724), an Upper-Hungarian Painter at the British Court

Poslední vůle Jakoba Bogdaniho (1658–1724), hornouherského malíře na britském královském dvoře

pp. 91–95

The Hungarian specialist in still-life and animal painting, Jakob Bogdani, acquired throughout his career as the royal court painter of England significant wealth. With his advanced age and serious illness, he decided to sell his paintings — however, without leaving any known list of items or their pricing. Bogdani died in the day of this sale, when his last will was already signed and sealed. The transcript of that document, originally processed in the Prerogative Court of Canterbury, is preserved to this day in The National Archives in London. The document clarifies that the major part of the author’s hereditaments should have been bequeathed by his daughter Elizabeth and his son-in-law Tobias Stranover (1684–1756). They were named heirs of the estates in Hitchin and Spalding, which included agricultural facilities and booth-stalls. This concludes, the painter aside from his career in art, took a part also in other gainful activities. Despite the implication of George Vertue (1684–1756), Jakob Bogdani did not die in poverty, as it was commonly thought, but even in the time of his death, he possessed a fortune in the form of his estates. A harsh investment of his son William (1699–1771) was one of the causes of his financial troubles, which was arguably the reason, why Bogdani chose to leave the major part of his properties to his daughter and his son-in-law. In the testament, there are also notes, directly concerning his oeuvre. In parti- cular, the mention of the so-called ‘modelli’ might raise the questions. A half of those items, which were arguably Bogdani’s working instruments, should have been given to his daughter and son-in-law, and the other half was meant for William. However, it is not known whether they were accumulated supplies of sketches or stuffed animals. In this document, also the executors of the last will were named. They were John Smith — Bogdani’s frame-maker; and his colleague and friend, Edward Byng (ca. 1676–1753).

< back
| summary |

Tomáš Hylmar

„Jsme jediní moderní ve svých generacích.“Úvahy nad činností Skupiny 42 v dopise Jindřicha Chalupeckého z roku 1945

Reflections on the activity of Group 42 in a letter from Jindřich Chalupecký in 1945

pp. 96–101

When Group 42 held its first postwar exhibition in 1945, the initiator of the renewal of activity was the young theorist and art critic Jiří Kotalík. The members of the group, namely František Gross, František Hudeček, Jan Kotík, Kamil Lhoták, Jan Smetana, Karel Souček, Josef Kainar, Ivan Blatný and Jiří Kolář, were at that time exhibiting their drawings, watercolours and prints and reciting their poems in the Pošova Gallery in Prague. The exhibition was given a positive reception in the reviews of art critics. Jindřich Chalupecký, who was active in the establishment of Group 42 and in its first exhibitions in 1943, did not participate in the preparations for this exhibition. He waited to see if the members of the association would be able to appear again together in public. The successfully renewed activity of the group nevertheless evoked a reaction from him and in the course of the exhibition, in September 1945, he sent an extensive letter to Jiří Kotalík and all members of the association. In it he analyses the position of the group in the Czech art scene and deals with the basic question of whether to continue. He considers Group 42 to be an elite association, the only one that is modern and stands out from the rest. He recommends maintaining the activity of the group and also its exclusivity. He formulates the programme of the association with the aid of critical questions to which he also supplies the answers. He even foresees the future of Group 42, which he felt should become a centre for further artists. In conclusion he also plans a great retrospective exhibition and the publication of an extensive monograph. In the end these great plans came to nothing. The group organised further exhibitions in Bratislava and in Brno. But this was followed by gradual disintegration and after 1948 Group 42 vanished completely.

< back
| summary |


Sabina Rosenbergová

Inkarnat und Signifikanz. Das menschliche Abbild in der Tafelmalerei von 200 bis 1250 im Mittelmeerraum

pp. 102–105

Pavol Černý

Kateřina Kubínová, Pražský evangeliář Cim 2. Rukopis mezi zeměmi a staletími středověké Evropy

pp. 105–108

Blanka Kubíková

Thea Vignau-Wilberg, Joris and Jacob Hoefnagel. Art and Science Around 1600

pp. 109–113

Andrej Koziel

Štěpán Vácha a Radka Heisslerová, Ve stínu Karla Škréty. Pražští malíři v letech 1635-1680

pp. 113–117

Pavla Machalíková

Katarína Beňová, Z akademie do přírody. Podoby krajinomalby ve střední Evropě 1860-1890

pp. 117–119

Josef Vojvodík

Zdeněk Brdek, Obhájce moderního umění. Jindřich Chaloupecký v kontextu 30. a 40. let 20. století

pp. 119–122

Martin Charvát

Pavla Machalíková a Tomáš Winter (edd.), Nespatříte hada

pp. 122–124

Kimberly Zarecor

Lucie Skřivánková, Rostislav Švácha, Eva Novotná a Karolína Jirkalová (edd.), Paneláci 1 & 2

pp. 124–127


pp. 128–131

Acquisitions of Art History Sources

pp. 132–136

České resumé / English Summaries

pp. 137–144

Editing Principles for Publications in Umění/Art

pp. 146