©2020 by Michael Rowland. 
 

Googly Eyes around Prague

May 31, 2018

 

 

 

Well, this has been a busy fortnight alright. I barely have the wherewithal to write about it. So much seen and done and learnt and enjoyed.

First things first, Chantelle Goldthwaite, artist, friend and my Californian collaborator in the Alt*Art Society flew over from the states to tag, tease and tickle Prague with the good word of the 'Threshold' project. Great meet-ups with fellow creative conspirators here proved intoxicatingly inspiring and have opened so many wonderful avenues which this far reaching project could take; thematically, musically, visually and conceptually.

We scoured the city for clues, and alternative views and gallery space prospects and were rewarded with suggestions, keen interest, offers of help and support and a synchronicitous cheer from every nook, cranny and underpass we explored.

Prague, Berlin and South Africa...WE'RE WHAT WE'RE and the time is near.

And yes we will be wielding googly eyes and a glue stick.

 

 

Aside from all this motivating shit I saw four things which I want to share;

one has gone and three are still there.

The goner, and the number one(r) was a fabulous performance I saw two nights ago at this year's Prague MicroFestival.

'Flood - Scroll - Flood' was conceived and performed by Prague-based artists Jo Blin and Erica Hoelper of 'Obejvak' and the 'Zvlast Collective'.

In a riveting, ever so subtly humorous production Jo and Erica explored the suffocating toxicity of those bigoted abstract 'comments' found lurking beneath YouTube videos or caught butting their way uninvited into Twitter feeds.

The temptation to scroll on through the flood of these all too familiar, poisonous, callous, evil attacks is represented by the two main protagonists who each try to deal with the situation in their own way. Gradually the set of film projections, paddling pools, rubber ducks, tattooed chickens, fish tanks and goggles becomes more and more chaotic as the impossible idiocy of the anonymous invaders to their consciousness becomes overwhelming.

This is not the last we shall see of this project as Jo and Erica intend to extend the concept to become a larger volume of conjoined performance pieces. This I am looking forward to immensely.

 

 

 

The other three, the last one free, were mind-blowing, encouraging and dead good, respectively.

The Jiri Kolar retrospective 'Grimmace of the Century' at Kinsky Palac is the balls.

The Maria Lassnig retrospective at the Veletrzne Palac is the shit.

The Matt Collinshaw exhibition 'Standing Water' at the Rudolfinum is dead good.

 

Jiri Kolar is my all time favourite Czech artist and there was not one work of his here which didn't knock mine and Chantelle's socks off. Bare in mind however that this place is guarded by a soldier with a gun and the two old lady gallery assistants will hover over your shoulder like you have a gun. Be warned; a hearty 'Well howdy there, how are you doing on this fine day!?' will not phase them. It will not phase them one bit!

 

 

 

Maria Lassnig is new to me. And she came as a wonderful surprise considering I have recently begun dabbling with stop motion film. There are 8 or so large projections of her films downstairs in the 'Moving Image' section of the gallery and I just fell in love instantly. Bless that tough German cookie.

 

 

 

Petr Nedoma, the curator of 'Standing Water', has done an amazing job at the Rudolfinum showing off Matt and the gallery so beautifully. I won't spoil the fun, but the final room is a real nipple twister of delight.

 

 

 

Oh! And how could I forget!?

Jessica Serran and her latest Becoming Artist show last week ‘Innermost’ at the awesome White Pearl Gallery was another massive success.

 

 

 

Any road up, more next time about my most recent personal project concerning stop motion film, toys and the question of my sanity. And maybe a few more words about 'Innermost‘. It deserves it.

 

 

((((()))))

 

Hope you enjoyed all that. Follow me on Instagram, like me on Facebook and feel free to say 'Hi' to me on either one of those or even on the contact page of this very website.

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I am committed to making this blog as snappy, fun, experimental and accessible as I can. If any of what I post, paint, paste or print resonates with you, please forward to friends and colleagues with wild abandon!

 

 

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