19. 9. 2018 – 16. 11. 2018
The power of abstract thoughts is a key point of fascination for those pondering the meaning of objets d’arts. Artists transpose abstraction into tangible works, creating value not just for themselves in the process, but also for those willing to join creators in stepping through the proverbial looking glass. Among the many sparks that ignite creative impulses are memories – powerful moments in which the past and present are able to intertwine. And Dana Zámečníková (born 1945) is one such artist mining her own emotional memory, creating a site-specific work inspired by Vernet’s famous painting A Storm on a Mediterranean Coast (1767). The reason? For years, a print of this painting hung above her bed in the home of her parents, thus becoming an indelible part of Zámečníková’s world.
In her series of glass paintings – glass panes decorated with the aid of 3D printing, silk-screen printing, hand-drawing, and, for the first time for her work, lithophanes – Zámečníková stands out for the constant variation, evolution, and fresh content which she adds to the classic 17th century artwork. She has also utilised the exhibition space as a kind of notional frame, into which observers are invited to step. And the artworks’ dependence on the position of the observer serves to reflect a natural linkage to the human sense of perception. Furthermore, thanks to an effective use of gallery space, the entire installation is also influenced by time of day and weather conditions. Zámečníková thus empathically expresses herself not only as a glass artist, but also as an architect – indeed, she studied both fields during the late 1960s and early 1970s at Czech Technical University in Prague (ČVUT) and the Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design in Prague (UMPRUM).
The works of Dana Zámečníková form a part of over thirty prestigious public collections across Europe, Asia, America and Australia. These include The Corning Museum of Glass, Corning, New York state; the Metropolitan Museum in New York; the Victoria & Albert Museum in London; and the Museè des Arts Dècoratifs in Paris. Very few Czech glass artists have managed to attain such recognition and prestige abroad. But Zámečníková is far from resting on her laurels, constantly honing the potential of her artistic output, including the incorporation of modern technologies. After all, is not the entire process of artistic creation akin to an adventurous, yet dangerous, swim across a stormy sea? Perhaps therein lies the artist’s inspiration from Vernet’s famous work…