Mr. Václav Stratil, 2000
height 170 cm
Portrait of Mr. Václav Stratil – a modeled portrait of the FaVU pedagogue in clay BUT in Brno and the artist Václav Stratil, subsequently cast from polyester and laminate. Originally just a challenge from one of my classmates, it turned into something performance and action. I gradually spent almost a year studying the body of Václav Stratil. In retrospect, it could be said that it was about a kind of documentation of his physiognomy (Václav changed his weight several times), but also a very unique work, the goal of which was a portrait a distinctive artist in the attitude of his creative process. But that was only part of it the whole work, which also had other overlaps with impacts on my other work in next years. To this day, the conversations that we had when we worked together with Václav are unforgettable for me, and they became very important to me, inspiring and, in a way, he became another mentor to me. During work, I also started to deal with the variability of the surfaces of the sculpture and its colors. To a certain extent, the artist Milan Kozelka also intervened here at some point, who filmed this event on video and helped me create visualizations of surfaces of the emerging sculpture (these materials were exhibited only as a part earlier student theses and unfortunately have not been recovered). The portrait of Václav Stratil became the content of my bachelor’s thesis and the defense took place as a unique performance, with the final question of the portrayed Václav Stratil in the role of the opponent: “Does it still make sense to do statues like this?”
THE FINAL FORM OF THE STATUE
DESIGNS OF SURFACES AND COLOR SOLUTIONS
Designs of the surfaces and color solution of the statue of Václav Stratil, graphic editing on Macintosh Quadra, Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator 5.0, collaboration with former students of the graphic design studio FaVU BUT in Brno, fragments of graphic images, 1999-2000.
The designs were created under the influence of period enthusiasm and even euphoria from the new possibilities of computer graphics. At the end of the nineties, the Internet in the Czech Republic was just at the beginning of its expansion, and graphic programs were becoming a powerful tool not only for designers. It was during my work on the portrait of Václav Stratil that I managed to test the possibilities of new graphic technologies and visualizations thanks to my classmates from the graphic design studio FaVU VUT in Brno. From today’s point of view, this is already a banal and long-overdue matter, but at the time the possibilities of these programs seemed like a revelation, they were just becoming technological classics.