...in search of the hidden and of the endless quest for treasures...
Studio K.O.V. (concept – object – meaning)
Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design in Prague
in cooperation with Die Neue Sammlung – The International Design Museum Munich
Die Neue Sammlung
Pinakothek der Moderne
18. March 2011, 6.30-7 pm
19. March - 17. April 2011
Tue - Sun 10am - 6pm, Thu 10am - 8pm
The “TREASURE HUNT” exhibition is a current project undertaken by the K.O.V. Studio at the Academy of Art, Architecture and Design in Prague. Professor Eva Eisler, the Head of the Studio, gave her students no scale boundaries in creating these three-dimensional art objects. Her teaching philosophy is to let them develop his or her potential to the fullest.
Although the initials K.O.V. make up the Czech word “metal”, the Studio is the only department of the Academy’s Department of Applied Arts that has no assigned media. In fact, the letters stand for Concept – Objekt - Meaning. In its stance the Studio feeds on educational traditions from the related fields of jewellery, sculpture and large-scale objects of art, all of which have for decades been considered by the AAAD academy as equal and interrelating. If one had to pick one fundamental approach currently embraced by the K.O.V. Studio, headed by Professor Eisler, it would be an orientation towards creating original works, rather than designing objects for reproducible series.
In the title of this year’s exhibition, the word “Treasure” evocates a search. Search as a journey towards a hidden treasure is synonymous with artistic creativity. Both are endless processes in which new questions, not answers, are found. The journey is the destination; the treasure itself remains shrouded. The artist and the public both become treasure hunters. The “box” is seen here as an integral part of the cherished object it keeps. To an artist it represents possibilities of expressing through art what it is he or she is seeking. To the object, it allows the means of existing as a treasure. A treasure box can actually be a treasure in its own right. There are also many examples in history of jewellery boxes that are bona fide art objects!
While treasure hunt as a theme becomes a highly personal endeavour, it touches upon universal human experience. Thus some students reach into their personal childhood memories for inspiration. Others, inspired by ancient civilizations or by a timeless, “pure” form, try to imbue their creations with their divination of an archetype treasure box. Among the objects on view are items reminiscent of the proverbial Grandma’s keepsake box side by side ethereal cathedrals.
In the course of their studies with Professor Eisler, students work on varied assignments, and gradually acquire knowledge of varied media. Different materials applied to identical themes cultivate awareness of analogous forms and techniques. Part of the “Treasure Hunters” project was a requirement to use wood. For some students this proved to be quite a challenge. In visual arts, one often talks about “remaining true to the material”, about the “quality of art emanating from a union between intellectual vision and a masterful command of the media”. Yet a stab at expressing oneself in an unchartered media may catapult an artist into innovative work. Throughout the history of European art, we know of numerous epochal works done by artists who perhaps substituted unprecedented courage for incomplete knowledge of technological procedures and properties of the material!
About the author
Jirí Šibor, 1966 Brno, Czechoslovakia. Since 1990 exhibited abroad and home, occupy mind by theme "Cold Connected Constructions" in jewelry; occasionally graphic designer, sculptor, curator of exhibitions and correspondent.
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Czech Jewelry : past and present of innovative jewelry.
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