5,000 m² for art
PLATO is a city gallery for contemporary art. It operates within an area of almost 5,000 m² in the former Bauhaus hobby market in the centre of Ostrava. In a few years its definitive address will be the reconstructed and listed heritage city slaughterhouse from the end of the 19th century next to Bauhaus.
We believe in artists
We provide backing to all who want to understand the world in a broader context. Its complexity and richness are reflected through art. Being part of the international scene and at the highest possible level. We believe in artists and they can rely on us. We initiate creation of new works of art and art projects and devise new formats of contemporary art presentation.
Art in context
Contemporary (visual) art is presented in the context of other disciplines of art and science. We strive towards its deeper appreciation in collaboration with contemporary artists from the fields of music, literature, creative theatre, as well as prominent scholars in art history, philosophy and social sciences. We prepare educational programmes for schools and the general public.
The only city institution for visual art
PLATO is the only organisation subsidised by the City of Ostrava, which is devoted to visual art without building its own collection. A gallery that would be founded and financed by the city was in general demand by art lovers from the 1990s. PLATO was established on 1 July 2016. Its existence was preceded by a grant project in Dolní Vítkovice (2013–2016).
With support of Ministry of Culture of the Czech Republic, Moravian-Silesian Region
Principal media partner: A2 cultural biweekly
Media partners: ArtMap, Ostravan.cz, Radio Wave, HIS Voice, kudyznudy.cz
Partners: ICOM Prague 2022, Národní filmový archiv, Ponrepo, Goethe-Institut Prag
Special thanks to Ostrava City Library
PLATO Ostrava is a city-funded organisation of the City of Ostrava.
We are a new city institution which searches for adequate formats of presenting contemporary (by definition global) art and for understanding its form, nature and aims – under the specific conditions of the place that it is connected with.
Contemporary art is not a static affair. It is a collection of approaches to producing works of art and their interaction with the public, often requiring unusual support infrastructure, which so far does not exist at the level of a public institution within the Czech Republic. We take the restrictions set by legislation as well as the spatial, organisational and staffing limitations as a challenge to look for fresh solutions which can put up with the unstable and varying demands and forms of contemporary art. We are convinced that an institution should adapt to the nature of contemporary art and the needs of artists, curators and other creative individuals and not vice versa. An institution which rigidly adheres to the established formats and approaches demanded by the public does not work properly and does not fulfil its function – not just in relation to art and artists but, most importantly, in relation to the public. Contemporary art shows and changes the world from perspectives which are not a common component of our everyday behaviour and often even contradict it. This is the real value of art and to insist on it is our responsibility to the public and the founder of the institution.We consider education an equal and inseparable part of the activities and the identity of the institution.
We believe in contemporary art which is, in principle, in a permanent state of birth and whose forms, functions and aims are continually changing in the same way as the whole world. The base values of modern art – being open to the new, criticism of social injustice and belief in humans as free, sensitive and critical beings – continue in contemporary art in a way which is compliant with the 21st century experience and which attains unique forms in different places around the world, including Ostrava.
At this moment there is no general agreement on the future of the city and region in which we operate. We take it as our assignment to use contemporary art to present available and globally inspiring alternatives to this future as well as critical understanding and experiencing of the present. We create awareness of the more and more complicated world and the different ways of understanding, depicting and considering its risks and challenges. With regard to the unique qualities of the place and the state it is in, for which we share responsibility.
Marek Pokorný, director of PLATO, and curators Jakub Adamec, Daniela & Linda Dostálková, Michal Novotný, Michal Novotný
Assistant to the Director
+420 739 679 429
+420 736 699 600
Curator and programming
+420 739 675 582
Programme and project manager
+420 739 678 915
Communication and PR
+420 727 815 134
+420 737 834 512
Anna Pohořálková, Dagmar Pavlánová, Lívie Škutová
+420 702 206 099
Educational programmes for schools
Gallery educator and coordinator
+420 727 952 712
+420 737 855 798
Production and operation
+420 602 201 857
+420 720 955 726
+420 739 273 641
Production (part time)
+420 702 121 101
+420 739 279 185
+420 737 859 781
+420 725 871 888
+420 605 287 326
Since 2018, PLATO has been developing its activities on almost 5000 m2 in the former Bauhaus hobby market in the centre of Ostrava. The generous open space of the hall includes a library with a reading room, a bistro with an adjacent roofed garden and a cinema serving as a relaxation zone during the day. There is a large stage for concerts or theatre, and a shop. All these facilities, as well as the information point/reception, educational programmes facilities and cloakroom, were built together with artists over the course of one year, and that is why they are both functional zones and works of art. As this is a temporary seat of the institution, they were made with minimum construction works. Elements referring to the former function of the building, such as inscriptions or wall decoration, have been intentionally left in the PLATO interior.
PLATO will get a permanent location in the former municipal slaughterhouse in the centre of Ostrava. The slaughterhouse building served its original purpose from 1881 to 1965, it began falling into disrepair in the 1970s and in 1987 it was listed as a cultural monument. In 2017, the City of Ostrava launched an international architecture competition for the reconstruction of the slaughterhouse for the needs of a Municipal Gallery; the winning reconstruction design was developed by the Polish studio KWK Promes of Robert Konieczny. The investor, i.e. the City of Ostrava, has started the reconstruction in spring 2020, and its completion is planned for 2021. (updated in September 2021)
An extraordinary event requires an extraordinary venue. If you are planning something for a small private company or on the contrary something big, you can rent the entire gallery hall, or just the library reading room, the cinema with its own sound equipment, the stage (theatre) or the roofed garden. You can also use the bistro PLATO Café with its own kitchen that will provide customised catering.
Contact details of the data protection officer:
Moore Advisory CZ s.r.o., seated at Karolínská 661/4, Karlín, 186 00 Praha 8; represented by jednatel Ing. Radovan Hauk. Contact person Petr Štětka, tel. 734 647 701, e-mail: email@example.com.