Transparency of Colours
Created: 12. 4. 2022 from Vysoká škola uměleckoprůmyslová v Praze

Transparency of Colours

2. 4. – 9. 10. 2022

GlazenHuis Lommel, Dorp 14b, Lommel, Belgium


The Glass Studio will present the work of its students, graduates, and teachers in Lommel, Belgium. It will present a selection of works created under the more than ten-year leadership of Rony Plesl and Klára Horáčková.

The exhibition Transparency of Colours builds on a previous project called Colours of Transparency, which took place as part of the London Design Festival in 2018 and presented a cross-section of works by students, and graduates of the glass studio of the Academy of Arts, Architecture, and Design in Prague (UMPRUM). The tradition of the glass studio at the UMPRUM dates back to the 1940s and is closely connected with the renewal and post-war expansion of the glass industry in then Czechoslovakia. Professors, students, and graduates of this studio played a significant role as industrial designers, successfully presented their art at the world EXPO exhibitions in Brussels, Montreal, and Osaka, and since the end of the 1950s, thanks to them, and especially thanks to the innovative use of the technique of glass cast sculptures by the artistic duo Stanislav Libenský and Jaroslava Brychtová, glass has also penetrated into fine art in a very distinctive way. Due to its specific material and optical properties, glass has become a new and fully-fledged sculptural material, which is widely used not only in design but also in fine arts and specifically lies on the border of both these creative worlds. The UMPRUM glass studio, which has contributed significantly to this development, has also always balanced on the borderline between fine and applied art since its founding, and this is no different today.

The exhibition presents a total of 24 glass artists among them are students, graduates, Ph.D. students, and heads of the UMPRUM Glass Studio. The works are therefore not only a look back at more than ten years of activity of the studio under the leadership of Professor Rony Plesl and Klára Horáčková, but also an insight into the future. Many of the exhibiting students will enter the professional art world in the coming years, and the current works are therefore a kind of indication of their future direction. In a very condensed form, the exhibition shows the development of contemporary glass in the Czech Republic, but at the same time, the continuity of the studio in the context of the transition from fine art to design and back is strongly visible. Thinking through the concept of a work of art or a design proposal, emphasis on the idea, metaphor, and connection to the resulting form, the ability to convey your vision to the viewer in the form of a clever and content-infused shortcut, should be the ideal result of the presented works. The freedom of artistic expression that has long been built up in the studio is also evident in the multitude of forms used and the variety of associated materials and techniques.

The exhibition also includes an installation by Tomáš Kučera and Johan Pertl entitled Nonequilibrium State of Matter, which was created as part of the artist residency at GlazenHuis Lommel. 

Text: Ján Gajdušek