Curatorial History of Contemporary Art

At present Pavlína Morganová, an art historian and curator, is active in the Department of Art History and the Research Centre of the Academy of Arts in Prague.

She is the author of Art of Action and participated in the preparation of the anthology Czech Art 1938-1989 – programmes, critical texts, documents and Czech Art 1980-2010 – Texts and documents.

In 2005 Pavlína Morganová curated the exhibition Insiders focusing then on the youngest generation of artists who appeared on the art scene in the mid-1990s. Besides others the exhibition showed works by Ján Mančuška, Zbyněk Baladrán, Alena Kotzmanová, Jan Nálevka and Pavel Ryška. Not only in connection with this exhibition did Morganová lay emphasis on her specific curator´s approach – although the material was contemporary material she aimed at treating it an art-historical manner. The exhibition was a result of long-term research work. Besides emphasizing the insider character of the art scene, she tried to define the work of „the young“ also on the basis of shared formal qualities. What was supposed to connect „the inconspicuous generation“ was „handicraft, workmanship, cheap material – some sort of refined DIY“. It was exactly this characteristics of style which showed to be controversial, also from the view point of some of the exhibiting artists.
In 2007 Pavlína Morganová mapped the current art scene through the project Artscape. At the beginning she addressed several young artists and asked them to name five contemporary artists who played a key role in the context of their work and the ones they named where asked the same…. The result of this project was presented through the interactive java application on the webpages (www.artscape.cz).
Last year (2012) Pavlína Morganová prepared the exhibition Beginning of the century. She aimed at showing a representative image of „Czech art of the first decade of the 21st century“ to regional public not much acquainted with contemporary art. By emphasizing its edifying function she reacted to criticism that the exhibition did not show enough new material.

 

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