, 14. 2. 2024

Devětsil and the Aura of Mechanical Reproducibility

Meghan Forbes (New York)

Ústav dějin umění AV ČR, Praha, přednáška

(I. patro, č. 117)

This talk by Dr. Meghan Forbes will present a popular topic from a new angle, turning once again to the books and magazines made by the interwar Czechoslovak avant-garde, but with a view towards how they were produced. Drawing on Forbes’s forthcoming book manuscript, Technologies for the Revolution: The Czech Avant-Garde in Print, the talk will introduce advancing forms of print technology — including letterpress, lithography, and photomechanical image-making — that Devětsil utilized to create an impressive trove of printed matter. By offering insights into the modes of mechanical reproduction available in the 1920s, the necessary collaborations with print professionals, and the economy of distribution, Dr. Forbes aims with her work to bring new, material meaning to the theoretical and artistic concepts for which Devětsil is already so well known, such as the picture poem and Poetism.