Vlastimil Šenkýř, a graduate of the Glass Studio of the Academy of Arts, Architecture, and Design in Prague was awarded in the international competition Talente for his diploma thesis "Lapis Philosophorum".
The Talente international art competition is held every year in Munich, Germany, at the same time as the Schmuck trade fair. The competition is organized by the Handwerkskammer für München und Oberbayern. The Talente competition has been running since 1980 and supports young artists in the field of applied art and design.
Vlastimil Šenkýř's diploma thesis is among the 10 winners. It should be noted that this is the only prize awarded for glass and also the only winner from the Czech republic.
The work Lapis philosophorum was created in the Glass Studio under the direction of Rony Plesl. In the thesis, Vlastimil Šenkýř deals with the creation of stones from glass, which he leaves in their rough form on purpose. These objects created by him have similar structures as stones that can be found in nature, but their origin is not conditioned by time, but rather by Šeknýř's experiments with different colors of glass and metal oxides. Although they are very similar to natural stones, they are man-made, and not by natural processes. But does that mean they are artificial? With this project, he tries to point out the fragility of the borderlines and concepts that we tend to create. He is inspired by the fact that we are all made of the same elementary particles, stardust, and therefore connected to everything in this world.
The jury evaluated his work as follows: "Vlastimil Šenkýř's project "Lapis Philosophorum" impressed the jury with its blurring of the boundaries between nature and art. The work seems to be a product of alchemy that combines nature, art, and science and thus documents the close proximity of these areas where they are currently being found and inspired by each other. At first glance, the pieces have a fascinating, almost inconspicuous appearance, but upon closer inspection, the objects are magnificent and beautifully colored. "