In 1968, as the Russian tanks rolled into Czechoslovakia and his home city of Prague, Jan Koblasova was away in Italy and subsequently gained asylum in Germany, while his work left at home was confiscated by the authorities.
One of Czechoslovakia’s leading artists, and recognised across Europe (but little-known in the UK), the diverse range of his work fills all the floors of the historic medieval Golden Ring House in the Old Town of Prague which retains cellars and wall paintings from the end of the 15th century plus wooden timber ceilings in the upper floors from the 16th century – an interesting contrast to the contemporary art on display.
Koblasova’s colourful, dancing sculptures sit in front of series of his screenprints from throughout his career which confirm his position as a master of this medium. Koblasova is versatile, working as a sculptor, printer, graphic artist, writer and stage designer with the theme of the life and the fate of man.
The exhibition is structured around print cycles from the 1950’s until the present time, and shows how he has developed from screen prints and woodcuts to the modern era of digital graphics and includes works which Koblasova has donated to the Prague Gallery and which the Gallery acquired when they were confiscated in 1968.
His bold work, both monochrome or coloured, takes over the whole of the Golden Ring House and compliments the historic rooms to create a great exhibition which shows the best of this Czechoslovakian artist.