Time Travel Tuesday: Albín Brunovský

May 24, 2011

Welcome to another edition of Time Travel Tuesday with Sara of Brown Paper Bag! Her past posts on Joseph Cornell and Hilma af Klint have been a huge hit, so enjoy this week’s fantastical etchings by Slovakian artist, Albín Brunovský. Then head over to BPB for my piece on Romare Beardan’s jazz-inspired collages!

Immediately I was struck when I came upon the work of Albín Brunovský, a Slovak painter, graphic artist, lithographer, and illustrator. His carefully etched prints depicted portraits fused with scenes of struggle and play.

Brunovský was born in Zohor, Czechoslovakia in 1935 on Christmas Day. He started his art career making posters and working on stage sets. Later, he would study at the Academy of Fine Arts in Bratislava under Professor Vincent Hložník. This teacher was known for his humanist perspective, and students were often inspired by Francisco Goya’s The Disasters of War, a multi-plate print series of visual protest against the violence of the 1808 Dos de Mayo Uprising. It was also used as a model for work.

Over the course of his career, Brunovský experimented with a number of different printmaking techniques and produced work in many spheres of graphic art. He not only printed editions, but also illustrated children’s books and even designed last series of Czechoslovak banknotes.

Highly influenced by poetry and literature, I find the prints very inspired from these sources. They stand by alone as a single image, but also beg to have more of their stories revealed. The aloof nature of his female subjects is both intriguing and a bit frightening, as they give host to nothing less than small armies.

A quote from Albín Brunovský about his work (or not working):
“I have such a creative program that pushes me to work. My pictures are simply doing with me what they want. Sometimes I don’t feel like working. But when I come to my studio and I notice, that one work is not ready and the other one hopeless, I go and sit next to them for a while and suddenly I realise that there is evening. And in this way every morning I let myself to be pleasantly abused by my paintings that allow me to dream.”

All images via And If It’s Real.

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