Museum of Modern Art | Attic, Picture Gallery
The presentation portrays the best of our rich collection of 20th century art. This is, in brief, the basic aim of the new permanent exposition located on two floors of the Modern Art Museum. One exhibition hall would not suffice for a permanent exposition since the Museum’s collections include a broad spectrum of works – often contradicting in ideas and styles of which we can identify as important, or even, without exaggeration, crucial not only for Czech modern and contemporary art.
The Attic exhibition hall has been assigned for the 1st half of the 20th century. We namely emphasize the paintings and sculptures which represent the basic streams in Czech modern art of this period. The introductory part uses selected works to document the echoes of impressionism, and, as a contrast, we exhibit the representatives of the symbolist tendencies of the early 20th century here. The exposition, is however, based on a thorough and rich presentation of modern trends seen from expressionism, cubism, cubo-expressionism up to civilism or, on the contrary, the exotism of the 1920s without forgetting abstraction and surrealism from the turn of 1920s and 1930s. The final chapter is then formed by works of Group 42 and by works reflecting the war apocalypse. We also paid special attention to modern landscape-painting whose most prominent works describe the atmosphere of the time of their origin as well.
The second part of the permanent exhibition – in the Picture Gallery – has an ambition to give a worthy overview of the most important artistic tendencies after the end of WWII up to the end of the 20th century. The exposition is introduced with examples of work from distinguished solitaires of the 1950s or authors who resumed the ideas of the pre-war avant-garde. We continue with post-war abstraction, works connected with various forms of lyrical and structural abstraction. Next, examples of varied forms of lettrism and neo-constructivism dominate among many antagonistic tendencies of the 1960s which contrast with paintings and sculptures of the so called new figuration, namely Czech grotesque and later existential figuration of the 1970s and 1980s. The exposition concludes with conceptual and post-modern manifestations whose influences had a clear impact on art in the last decade.
The Picture Gallery however, does not house Czech art only; we also strive to include the Czech collection into a broader context in relation to our acquisition efforts related to the Central European Forum Olomouc Project. Therefore, there are examples of exile authors and prominent Polish, Hungarian, and Slovak authors as well.