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Czech Artist Debuts in the US

Czech artist Josef Archer presented the U.S. debut of his exhibition "The Quest for Tranquil Space: Paintings and Photograms" at American University Museum at the Katzen Arts Center on June 11, 2022.

Over 500 people attended the opening, and the artist held a gallery talk the following day with welcome remarks by AU Museum Director Jack Rasmussen and Czech Ambassador Hynek Kmoníček. Rasmussen raved about the collaboration with the artist and was impressed by the large scale of Achrer's photograms. The artist uses the largest photo paper in the world to create these works.

Achrer’s exhibition is comprised not only of large photograms but also vivid colored acrylic paintings. The motifs of the paintings are mostly landscapes, in combination with abstract geometry, describing the stories of people seeking peace, quiet and tranquility amidst information overload.

Concerning the context of his work, Achrer said, “With the ever-growing amount of information, we are losing ourselves. We stop knowing who we are...we are what we present ourselves to be through digital media. Art teaches us to reconsider our relationship with the enormous amount of data that we consume.”

The exhibition also utilizes the space of the windows illuminated with Achrer's photograms at night. One of the windows includes an image over three stories high.

In the week leading up to the opening, the Czech President of the Senate and Senator from Jihlava district, Miloš Vystrčil, met with the artist who gave him a tour of his work that would be on display for the opening. The works assembled form a unique collection as most of them have not been viewed outside of Prague or at all. The exhibition contains several works made specifically with the unique gallery space of American University Museum in mind and coincides with the Czech Republic’s Presidency of the Council of the European Union, which begins July 1.

The exhibition in on display until August 7, 2022 at the AU Museum at the Katzen Arts Center. Please visit the AU Museum's website for specific hours at https://www.american.edu/cas/museum/reopening.cfm.

Contemporary artist Josef Achrer studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague (AVU) from 2004-2010, the San Francisco Art Institute (2008), the Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design in Prague, Painting Studio (2007), Technical College of Applied Arts, Painting Studio in Prague (2002-2004) and the Technical School of Applied Arts, Studio of Stage Set Scenery (1998-2002). He has held residencies at AIR – Artist in Residence/ Krems, Austria, and Studio Galerie Zdeněk Sklenář, CCC / Beijing. Furthermore, he has held solo and group exhibitions in the Czech Republic, Spain, Denmark, Germany, and China. In 2014, he received the Jan Světlík Award and the Art Critics Award for Young Painting in 2012. His work is in a number of collections, including at the Times Art Museum in Beijing, China; Faupel Collection in Berlin, Germany; Henri and Claude de Saint Pierre Collection in Paris, France; Galleries Zdeněk Sklenář, 8Smička, and GASK in the Czech Republic; among others. This exhibition marks his U.S. debut. For more information about the artist, please visit https://achrer.net/.


Josef Achrer Opening