Maximum Imaginativeness: an exhibition on modern Czech book design (1900-1950)

Image of cover of Maximum Imaginateveness catalogue
ISBN: 978-0-7727-6116-3 (paperback) | 120 pages | $25.00 | Ref. 7072

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The Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library holds some of the finest examples of modern Czech book design and illustration. This exhibition featured a display of books and journals published from the turn of the nineteenth century to the late 1940s, with examples ranging from the book beautiful (bibliophile) movement whose aesthetic principles were advanced by graphic artists Zdenka Braunerová, Vojtěch Preissig, František Kupka, and František Kobliha, to works by avant-garde artists and writers centered around the literary association Devětsil, including Karel Teige, Vítězslav Nezval, Jaroslav Seifert, and Toyen. Also covered are the various movements associated with this period, such as Symbolism, Decadence, Cubism, Constructivism, Poetism, and Surrealism. The exhibition focused on the development of book design in twentieth-century Czechoslovakia, primarily in Prague, and illustrated the developments in machine type, graphic design, book covers and binding, photomontage, and collage.

The exhibition, curated by Ksenya Kiebuzinski, Head, Petro Jacyk Central & East European Resource Centre, ran from Sept. 28 to Dec. 18, 2015.