Grey Gold. Czech and Slovak Female Artists over 65

Editors: Terezie Petišková, Vendula Fremlová, Anna Vartecká
Publishers: The Brno House of Arts, Brno et al.
Content: 247 pages
ISBN: 978-807009-163-0
Year: 2014

This monograph follows an eponymous exhibition project conceived by curators Vendula Fremlová, Terezie Petišková and Anna Vartecká, which was presented at the Brno House of Arts from May to August 2014.

The publication’s central catalogue section presents the photographic documentation of the exhibition and follows its specific architectonic designs and individual exhibits. It is preceded by expert texts dwelling on a host of topics explored by the project, as well as by authorised interviews with the female artists.

The introductory text “Project Genesis” by Terezie Petišková, director of the Brno House of Arts, describes the whole story of the project – from its initiation and the inspirational experience of meeting German artist Gisela Weimann to the final realisation of the exhibition. Anna Vartecká’s text “Czech and Slovak Female Artists over 65 through the Prism of Gender” dwells on the topic of creating the gender experience of the woman artist in the Czechoslovak context in the second half of the 20th century, and the issue of oral history, which is a key concept for the whole project.

The text also includes an analysis of the interviews with the artists, preserving the gender prism of looking at the developments in their own work and lives. In her text entitled “Production (in spite) of Age”, Vendula Fremlová describes the current state of art management with regard to the degree of presentation and presence of previous generations. It provides a detailed analysis of three artists born in the 1920s – D. Mrázková, A. Šimotová and D. Vinopalová-Vodáková – and identifies commonalities not only in their work, but also in the way they experience old age.

Mária Orišková’s text entitled “Marginalised and/or Powerful and Experienced?: Age, Artistic Production and the Institutionalisation of Women Artists” uses the example of two prominent Slovak female artists, M. Bartuszová and J. Želibská, in order to problematicise and illustrate the shift in feminist theories, as well as the role of institutions in art management. In her text “Female Encounters”, Adéla Matasová recalls her student years and the position of women in the then art society, as well as her own transformation into an active instigator of encounters of female artists in the late 1970s and early 1980s. In the text “Old Age and Creativity: A Sociological Outlook”, Lucie Vidovićová not only defines the basic sociological terms, but also dwells on the interpretation of the interviews with the artists. She sees old age as the space for layering experience and learning, as a source of freedom.

This publication is available at ERSTE Foundation Library.

Florian Bauer

Director Social Finance, Sustainability and Innovation
Since 2023, Florian Bauer has been responsible for social finance, sustainability and social innovation at ERSTE Foundation. Prior to this role, Florian worked in the NGO & Social Entrepreneurship sector for more than 13 years. He led the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Partnership (REEEP), an international multilateral NGO that works to accelerate market-based deployment of renewable energy and energy efficient systems in developing countries, and was Managing Director & COO of the Impact Hub Vienna. From 2020-2023, Florian established strategic alliances with key partners and helped to create innovative semantic technology solutions at Semantic Web Company (SWC), a leading IT company in semantic AI solutions.