The retrospective of Jiří Pelcl’s work charts the forty-year-long career of this leading Czech designer spanning multiple creative periods and reflecting both the development of the decorative arts in the last decades and the political, social and economic changes. The exhibition aims to open up a view to the backstage of a designer’s job and to let the public know what lies behind.
Wood, metal, plastic, paper, glass, porcelain and textiles. During his career Jiří Pelcl worked with all of those materials, always trying to perfectly acquaint himself with each of them and respect their inherent characteristics. This approach influenced both Pelcl’s output and the exhibition itself. In the Museum of Applied Arts the designer’s work will be documented by concrete products but in particular by the background to their origin. On a general level it will provide a platform for discussion on the significance and the essence of a designer’s work and his collaboration with the industry. The educative focus of the exhibition will be reinforced by an installation with samples of materials and examples of procedures applied in the designing and making of various products. The sections dedicated to the individual materials will be completed under the patronage of the companies with which Jiří Pelcl worked on the design and development of new products.
The exhibition curator Adam Štěch says of the designer: „It is as if Jiří Pelcl knew no boundaries in his work. During his career he tried almost everything. At first he worked in an environment of communist industrial planning only to later become a rebel in the Atika group criticising the low quality of industrial production, which effectively made him a pioneer of post-modern trends in the country. These trends subsequently transformed into yet another form in his work following the changes in society and the establishment of a market economy and a free social order. From the 1990s he used his talent simultaneously in many disciplines and creative typologies. He worked for the industry, galleries, designed architecture and interiors, and made frequent detours to original craft-based creations.“
As an outstanding exponent of the country’s culture Jiří Pelcl dedicated himself to public enlightenment on design, publication and curatorial activities and, last but not least, teaching during his twenty years at the Academy of Art, Architecture and Design in Prague where he was rector between 2003 and 2007. His works are in the collections of important museums of design in Europe and the world, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York. The exhibition will be accompanied by an extensive catalogue covering Jiří Pelcl’s works in design from 1987 to the present day and will include the publication of a book for children to popularise the importance and value of design for society.
The visit of “Lucie Koldová: Lightness” exhibition is included in the price.