Kolář, Jiří: GERSAINTS AUSHÄNGESCHILD 1966. [Florence: Achille Maramotti, 1976: from Tau / Ma 2]

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Jiří Kolář

Jiří Kolář: GERSAINTS AUSHÄNGESCHILD 1966. [Florence: Achille Maramotti, 1976] First edition thus [ from Tau / Ma 2, originally published in Prague 1966, limited to 500 copies]. Slim quarto. Perfect bound and sewn printed yellow wrappers. 32 pp. 30 concrete poems. Front cover neatly detached at spine but present. Faint scrape to rear panel. A good copy of this uncommom Artists Book.

7 x 9.5 [17.2 x 24.3 cm] Artists Book presenting 30 Concrete Poems referencing the name and styls of Josef Albers, Max Bill, Constantin Brancusi, Alberto Burri, Alexander Calder, Sonia and Robert Delauney, Jean Dubuffet, Marcel Duchamp, Lucio Fontana, Étienne Hadju, Wassily Kandinsky, Kemeny, Paul Klee, František Kupka, El Lissizky, Kasimir Malevich, Georges Mathieu, Joan Miro, Piet Mondrian, Laszlo Moholy-Nagy, Ben Nicholson, Mark Rothko, Kurt Schwitters, Henryk Stażewski, Jackson Pollock, Władysław Strzemiński, Josef Šíma, Jean Tinguely, Victor Vaserely, and Wols.

Published as part of  a limited edition set [500 copies] of Artists Books by Achille Maramotti in 1976 and edited by Reggio Emilia. This is an unsigned/unnumbered example.

“Like most great artists of the past century, Kolář was both an anarchist and a reactionary. In order to “make it new,” the artist must systematically reject every aesthetic tendency that’s come before; the artist can either accomplish this task via exclusion or destruction. Witnessing first-hand the steady self-destruction of European civilization throughout his life, it seems only natural that Kolář would go the latter route – picking through the debris and disfiguring all that he came across, granting his objects a novel significance that certainly would’ve baffled their original creators.” — Travis Jeppesen

His New York Times Obituary [August 23, 2002]: Jiří Kolář , 88, Czech Collage Artist and Poet

“Jiří Kolář , the Czech artist and writer best known for his poetry and innovative collages and whose work brought him into conflict with his country's former Communist rulers, died on Aug. 11 at his home here. He was 88.

“Born in the southern town of Protivin in 1914, Mr. Kolar became a carpenter and held a number of manual jobs before embarking on his artistic career.

“He was a leading figure of a 1940's Surrealist group. His poetry and collages became the trademark of his work in the second half of the 20th century. He had his first exhibition in 1937, and his poetic debut, ''Birth Certificate,'' was published in 1941.

“The Communist rise to power in Czechoslovakia in 1948 marked the start of Mr. Kolar's decades-long struggle to be allowed to publish and exhibit. He was jailed for nine months in 1950 for one of his writings.

“His refusal to compromise led him to sign Charter 77, the declaration calling on the Communist authorities to respect international human-rights agreements, along with leading opposition figures including the current Czech president, Vaclav Havel, a playwright.

“Mr. Kolar emigrated in 1980 to France, where he stayed until the collapse of Communist rule here in 1989. He had several exhibitions in Western Europe and the United States, including a 1981 show at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in Manhattan.”