Presentation of the finalists of the most important Czech award for artists under 35.
Five finalists from the ranks of visual artists up to the age of 35 were selected by an international jury for the 31st edition of Jindřich Chalupecký Award 2020. They include Jakub Choma, artistic duo Anna Slama & Marek Delong, Marie Tučková, Jiří Žák and The Work Group for the Research of Extrasensory Aesthetics including Jan Kolský, Vojtěch Märc, Matěj Pavlík and Peter Sit. Artist Alma Lily Rayner, originally selected for the past edition, joins this year’s edition as well. The collective exhibition of the finalists and the exhibition of the international guest artists will be held at Ostrava’s PLATO gallery for the first time in the Award’s history.
The jury, including Zdenka Badovinac, director of Moderna galerija in Ljubljana, Vjera Borozan, art historian, theorist and teacher based in Prague, Lenka Klodová, artist, head of the Studio of Body Design at the Faculty of Arts at Brno University of Technology, João Laia, chief curator of the Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma in Helsinki, and Laurel Ptak, director of Art in General in New York, examined over 80 portfolios sent in by artists from the Czech art scene. The final selection represents a broad variety of media and theoretical approaches ranging from material approaches to sculpture, object, drawing and painting through multimedia installations to social engagement and theoretical-scientific research practice.
For the first time in the Award’s history, the final exhibition of the 31st edition of Jindřich Chalupecký Award 2020 will not have a winner based on the decision of the participating artists who refuse the principle of competition. This will give them equal space and attention while the audiences will be able to fully focus on the newly created artworks without having to compare them. Instead of the traditional award ceremony, we will present a two-day symposium featuring music and performances streamed live in cooperation with ČT Art channel.
The artists are working on new artworks to be installed in the generous space of the former Bauhaus hardware store which is the current seat of PLATO Gallery. Some of them will respond to local “temporary structures” including a library, a movie theater and a stage. The featured works will include short films, complex sculptural environments, audiovisual installations and environments for the creation and activities of a support platform for survivors of sexual violence and other forms of abuse and oppression. We are preparing a discussion and performance program as well.
The international guests of Jindřich Chalupecký Award 2020 include Pauline Boudry and Renate Lorenz, a Berlin-based artistic duo working together since 2007. In collaboration with Boudry and Lorenz, we are preparing a European premiere of their new work (No) Time co-produced by Jindřich Chalupecký Society, Mediacity Seoul, Frac Bretagne and CA2M Madrid.
Karina Kottová and Veronika Čechová, Jindřich Chalupecký Society
Jindřich Chalupecký Award, named in honor of the leading Czech theorist and critic of visual arts and literature, essayist and philosopher, was founded in 1990 by Václav Havel, Jiří Kolář and Theodor Pištěk. It is awarded to visual artists up to the age of 35 who live or work in the Czech Republic.
Jakub Choma (1995, Košice) studies at the Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design in Prague (Painting Studio of Jiří Černický and Michal Novotný). He has moved from painting to spatial realizations, assemblages, objects and installations. His work is based on almost laboratory experiments with various materials such as cork, Lucite and aluminum, while largely relying on digital visual culture and the aesthetics of gaming environments which strongly impact the artist’s generation. He is interested in themes like hyperproductivity and exhaustion typical for the neoliberal society as well as D.I.Y. culture, popular science and portable technologies. He has introduced his work primarily at independent galleries and art centers in the Czech Republic and Slovakia as well as internationally, for instance in Leipzig, Riga and Yogyakarta, Indonesia.
Anna Slama & Marek Delong
Anna Slama (1991, Brno) and Marek Delong (1986, Brno) form an artistic duo since 2015. Delong graduated from the Faculty of Fine Arts at Brno Technical University (Video Studio), Slama graduated from Konstfack University of Arts, Crafts and Design in Stockholm and went to several study stays, e.g. at Estonian Academy of Arts in Tallinn and Nagar School of Art in Jerusalem. In their artistic practice, they focus on installation, often assuming the dimensions of site-specific scenography, in which they embed their sculptures, objects, videos and paintings. The duo have shown a long-term interest in emotional strain and return to sensitivity and genuineness of artworks. They create a space for therapy and distance from the anxiety of the current generation facing the pressure of predatory capitalism and the loss of a positive vision of future and hope. By their approach, they are escaping logic and calculation, employing elements of fairy tales, sensuality and magic to create a space for vulnerability, intuition and unbiased navigation of the world. Delong and Slama regularly exhibit on the Czech and international gallery scenes, having recently introduced their work at CATBOX Contemporary in New York and FUTURA Center for Contemporary Art in Prague.
Marie Tučková (1994, Prague) a. k. a. Ursula Uwe received a BA from the Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design in Prague (Photography Studio of Aleksandra Vajd and Martin Kohout). She is currently studying a master’s program at the Dutch Art Institute Art Praxis in Arnhem, Netherlands. She also went to a study stay at Bezalel Academy in Jerusalem. Her work addresses new technologies and social media, asking how these transform human perception, communication and language. She primarily focuses on how they impact the experience and expression of emotions. Marie Tučková’s work is mostly autobiographic, however, she is often speaking through an alter ego in her projects, thus being able to objectify the examined situations and search for other ways of sensitivity, developing empathy, and redefining feelings. She mostly works in the medium of installation combining audio, performative and visual elements. These are interconnected through text, which is often transformed into lyrics, a video voice-over, audio story or performance script. Tučková introduced her work at a number of independent galleries and institutions in the Czech Republic and internationally, for instance at the Academiae Biennial of young art in Bolzano, Italy. In 2016–2018, she was part of the Studio without Master collective. In 2017, she became a holder of the EXIT award. Together with Eva Rybářová, she forms the artistic audiovisual duo Cloudy Babies.
The Work Group for the Research of Extrasensory Aesthetics (Jan Kolský, Vojtěch Märc, Matěj Pavlík and Peter Sit)
The Work Group for the Research of Extrasensory Aesthetics was founded in 2017. The current members include Jan Kolský, Vojtěch Märc, Matěj Pavlík and Peter Sit. Their work is based on the ongoing research of Czechoslovak parapsychology as well as the conviction that art can become a tool of social learning. The group explores the limits of science and art and researches their often esoteric language. They relate to technologies and magic, their connections with art, their occasional indistinguishability, and various forms of rationality employed within these fields. They study the effect of extrasensory perception on contemporary art, perceived as part of the world which has been conjured away and conjured up again. Their research of phenomena like telepathy and telekinesis hopes to refine our perception of non-standard ways of creation and transmission of information and peculiar methods of manipulation. The outputs of the Work Group were presented at Josef Sudek Studio during Fotograf Festival and at Cursor Gallery in Prague, at LOM in Bratislava, online as well as in a forest during a program run by the Institute of Anxiety.
Alma Lily Rayner
Alma Lily Rayner (1984, Tel Aviv) is an Israeli-born artist and activist based in Prague. She graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague, and has also studied at the Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design and FAMU in Prague. She went to a residency at Q21 Artists in Residence in Vienna and currently participates in the studio program of the cultural space Nová Cvernovka in Bratislava. In her work, Rayner addresses sociopolitical themes linked to gender, trauma and invisible forms of violence. While her projects are very personal, they are linked to long-term research and challenge dominant power systems. The artist works with various digital media, audiovisual “residual materials” as well as text and spoken word. She has introduced her work, which often transcends into public space, in Prague, Berlin, Paris, Jerusalem and Venice. She is the founder of the Barvolam association.
Jiří Žák (1989, Zlín) graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague (Studio of Intermedia Work III/Tomáš Vaněk School). He went to study stays at the Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design in Prague, the Studio of the Visiting Artist at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague, and the University of Art and Design in Karlsruhe. He works primarily in the media of the moving image and video installation, merging research, lyricism and the narrative form. He addresses the identity of post-communist countries and its deconstruction through non-western perspectives. He has researched the issue of Czech arms export to the Near East on a long-term basis, his other theme of interest being the sociopolitical relation to information published in the media and online. His latest works have also focused on environmental anxiety. Žák introduced his work at a number of independent galleries and institutions in the Czech Republic, and recently also internationally, e.g. at the Warsaw Biennial. He is active in the Studio without Master. In 2015, he became a holder of the EXIT award, in 2017 he was a finalist of the Other Visions competition at PAF Festival of Film Animation and Contemporary Art in Olomouc. He works for Artyčok TV and the National Film Archive in Prague.
Pauline Boudry a Renate Lorenz: (No) Time
Curator: Karina Kottová
Chodeography / Performance for the film: Julie Cunningham, Werner Hirsch, Joy Alpuerto Ritter, Aaliyah Thanisha
Production: Jakub Lerch
In 2020 the international guest artists of the Jindřich Chalupecký Award are Pauline Boudry and Renate Lorenz, who work together in Berlin since 2007. In collaboration with Boudry and Lorenz we are preparing a European premiere of their new work (No) Time, which is co-produced by the Jindřich Chalupecký Society, Mediacity Seoul, Frac Bretagne and CA2M Madrid.
Boudry and Lorenz produce installations that choreograph the tension between visibility and opacity. Their films capture performances in front of the camera, often starting with a song, a picture, a film or a score from the near past. They upset normative historical narratives and conventions of spectatorship, as figures and actions across time are staged, layered and re-imagined. Their performers are choreographers, artists and musicians, with whom they are having a long-term conversation about the conditions of performance, the violent history of visibility, the pathologization of bodies, but also about companionship, glamour and resistance.
In the 20-minute film (No) Time the artists question whether movements can simultaneously connect to utopian aspiration and political despair. At a moment when we are increasingly confronted with right-wing conservatism, it seems urgent to disrupt progressive conceptions of time and create a stage for something beyond: what will a minoritarian mode of temporality look like? Four performers seem to be rehearsing for a queer time: extreme slowness, being out of synch, changes of rhythms, stillness and breaks are working on escape routes, refusing the deadening beats of labor and the state-sponsored hopeless bars of being. The performers employ and often deliberately mix a range of dance elements inspired by hip-hop, dancehall, (post-)modern dance and drag performance. Even though they noticeably differ in their styles, they connect through sudden similarities, haunting movements, and body memories, producing and shifting their points of contact. While the film's end is also its beginning, the sequence of scenes offers an unpredictable experience of time, not least by raising doubt about how far slowness and ruptures are carried out by the performing bodies or by digital means.
Besides presenting this new work in a solo exhibition at PLATO, we are preparing a collateral screening in collaboration with the partner institution n.b.k. Berlin. Curators Krisztina Hunya (n.b.k.) and Karina Kottová (JCHs) will select films and videos from the Video Forum collection, which features more that 1700 moving image works by international and German artists, and include related works by Czech artists that contextualize formal and thematic approaches of Pauline Boudry and Renate Lorenz, such as the relation of live performance and film or documentation, choreography of space and bodily experience, or politics of choreography. The screening will be presented at PLATO during the Jury Weekend program (6/12/2020).
Pauline Boudry a Renate Lorenz are internationally established artists, who have presented their works in diverse notable contexts. In 2019 they have presented the project „Moving Backwards“ at the Swiss Pavillon during 58th Biennale di Venezia. Their most recent work, "Telepathic Improvisation” with performance by Marwa Arsanios, MPA, Ginger Brooks Takahashi and Werner Hirsch, premiered in 2017 at Participant, New York. “Silent” with performance by Aérea Negrot, premiered at the Biennale of Moving Image in Geneva in November 2016. In 2015 “I Want” with performance by Sharon Hayes, was shown in their solo show at Kunsthalle Zürich and Nottingham Contemporary. Recent solo exhibitions have included “Telepathic Improvisation” at the Centre Culturel Suisse Paris (2018) and CAMH Houston (2017), “Portrait of an Eye” at Kunsthalle Zürich (2015) “Loving, Repeating” at Kunsthalle Wien (2015) “Patriarchal Poetry” at Badischer Kunstverein (2013), “Aftershow” at CAPC Bordeaux (2013), “Toxic Play in Two Acts” at South London Gallery (2012), and “Contagieux! Rapports contre la normalité” at the Centre d´Art Contemporain Geneva (2011).
The exhibition is kindly supported by the Ministry of Culture, Czech Republic, Pro Helvetia, Czech-German Future Fund and IFA (Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen).
Held by Jindřich Chalupecký Society.
Partners of Jindřich Chalupecký Society:
Main Partners: Ministry of Culture of the Czech Republic, Prague City Hall, J&T Bank
Main Media Partner: Czech Television
Partners: Brno City Municipality, State Cultural Fund of the Czech Republic, Prague 7, Trust for Mutual Understanding, Czech Centers, Arts and Theatre Institute, The Moravian Gallery in Brno, Center and Foundation for Contemporary Arts Prague, Residency Unlimited, MeetFactory, Papyrus Bohemia s.r.o., Biofilms, Fair Art
Media Partners: Artyčok.tv, Artmap, Artalk.cz, Radio Wave, A2, Art + Antiques, Art Viewer, Flash Art, Rail Reklam, GoOut
Partners of the JCHA 2020 Exhibition: Cyrkl, Graffneck, Jami s. r. o., Zlatá loď
Special Partners of the exhibition by Pauline Boudry & Renate Lorenz: Czech-German Future Fund, ifa – Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen, Swiss Arts Council Pro Helvetia
The exhibition is held with financial support of Ministry of Culture of the Czech Republic, Prague City Hall and J&T Bank.