František Skála and Martin Janecký – František Skála’s Glass Kaleidoscope

Visit our Kuzebauch Gallery from 10th February to 15th April 2022 when you can see the exhibition by František Skála and Martin Janecký called František Skála’s Glass Kaleidoscope.

Euforik, 2022

Artists that prioritise an ongoing sense of experimentation often find themselves drawn to the field of glass. Meanwhile, glass masters (often themselves practicing artists), facing the additional challenge of learning the complex intricacies of forming glass, are typically more than happy to join forces and take up such a challenge. Aside from cultivating crucial mutual ties, these relationships can also yield much of note. One such relationship has formed between Czech artist František Skála and his counterpart, glass artist Martin Janecký.

František Skála has left the realisation of his mini-stories concerning strange, genetically modified figures (or entities) to Martin Janecký, a man who has successfully mastered the technology behind of hand shape glass. Skála, meanwhile, supplied the basic ideas in the form of drawings, also offering artistic correction input during the entire production process.

Dance Face to Face, 2022

From a wider perspective, Skála’s collaboration in this regard offers a satisfying outlet for the artist’s ability to perform a kind of “archaeological probing” of various materials, thus unveiling their inherent artistic properties, via the use of his painting, sculpting and installation-creating abilities. Skála is particularly interested in those materials for which such inherent potential may not be immediately obvious. Typically these are natural materials, such as coloured soil, branches, seashells, gastropod shells and the like. And now, glass has been added to the list, albeit of very different parameters. Skála’s works bear little resemblance to the predominant post-1945 trend in Czech glass art. After all, the main thrust of Skála’s modus operandi has been to toss out the existing rulebooks and simply focus on the pleasure of creation! Indeed, the fact that such works risk being excluded from the central currents of the contemporary Czech glass art movement is something Skála simply brushes off.  Originality, out-of-the-box thinking, even a touch of eccentricity – such facets form the very DNA of František Skála the artist.

The resulting individual sculptures reflect a kind of situational capturing of the adventure-filled escapades of grotesque-looking figures – almost mutant beings – who did not emerge by chance or by some automatic path, but rather came about via their creator’s modifying them into intelligent beings. Glass is melted in a furnace and worked according to František Skála’s designs.  The resulting art object is then cooled and subsequently matted. This is done in order to make the interior of the sculpture matted,  so as to guide the viewer’s eye purely towards the intricacies of the presented story. Another reason is to eliminate all peripheral distractions, namely glass reflections and sheen. As a result, the properties of the utilised material are directly subordinate to the desired narrative – to the intentions of the great storyteller himself, František Skála.