Lumír Hladík - Oh Brother

08. 02.2015 to 27. 09.2015


Baroque bath

Lumír Hladík is a major figure of Czech conceptual art of the 1970s who has lived in Canada since 1981. His installation ‘Oh Brother’, conceived specially for the Baroque spa of the Jesuit College, represents a symbolic reliquary recalling the life of his brother who died on the day of his sixtieth birthday. Another fundamental source of inspiration is that of the Canadian virgin forest, where Hladík is able to closely observe the inextricably linked processes of birth and death. The ultimate appearance of the exhibited reliquary was symbiotically co-created by forest animals such as bears and martens, whose biting literally gave the object its completed form. The profound understanding of nature that Hladík acquired led him back to the everrelevant meaning of Baroque art that, through a dramatically physical world, focuses on the world of metaphysical values. Hladík’s installation is also meant as a critical reflection on how the society of today suffers from an obsession with illusory ‘eternal life’ (for instance that of media celebrities) and blindly refuses to acknowledge the meaning of death.  As Hladík himself says: ‘Our disrespect for death is killing life!’

Richard Drury, kurátor výstavy

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