Josef Váchal (1884 - 1969) A BOX

Early 20th century
Ceramic, colorized
7,5 x 12 cm (h x w)

For sale   |   
48 000 CZK
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This unique ceramic box is a part of a collection of ritual and applied art objects (statuettes of gods, ceramics) that Josef Váchal created during his lifetime. The surface of the box is painted with colorful symbolic motifs and figures in nature. Along the sides are depictions of three animal heads, their snouts forming the feet of the box.

Painter, graphic artist, illustrator, sculptor and poet Josef Váchal excelled as an original artist especially in the technique of color woodblock prints, which earned him acclaim at exhibitions in Cologne and Florence. He trained as a bookbinder and attended a private school, where he was a student of Antonín Kalvoda.  He spent most of his life in seclusion and poverty, always fearlessly forging his own path regardless of the ridicule and blind eye he got from art critics. This distinctive Symbolist-based artist was the co-founder of Sursum, an art group whose artists also addressed Expressionist impulses. His original skill as a visual storyteller arose from anxiety, fear of the unknown and diary records of visual  and auditory hallucinations at night. Throughout his life he fluctuated between faith and heresy, reflecting his captivation with spirituality, the occult and theosophy in his art.