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Martin Skalický: Allegory

Ke Sklárně 3213/15, Praha MeetFactory

19. 11. - 9. 1. 2022
18. 11. 19:00

The work of Martin Skalický (born 1976) begins with the shapes of figurative sculpture. Since studying plasterwork at the Secondary School of Art and Design in Brno and later at FaVU with Michal Gabriel (20002007) and the Academy of Art, Architecture and Design in Prague with Kurt Gebauer (2003–2004), he has passed through several creative phases ranging from hyper-realist sculptures to more experimental works connecting “high art” in the form of Classical forms with the “low” culture of kitsch objects, porn-mag motifs, or cheap items of everyday use. But it is the significant stylistic transformation of recent years through which Skalický has established a recognisable autograph on the Czech scene.


Formally, these recent works can be described as the appropriation of historical sculptural forms which he adapts by layering onto the casts a textile filled with two-component resin. The soft textile material – old bed sheets, dish towels, and rags (another manifestation of Skalický’s preference for everyday items) – then adopts the forms of the original casts. In his installation for the Kostka Gallery, Skalický progresses a step further with his experimental approach, engaging a light source in the play of shapes and forms. This results in aesthetically impressive, refined, and, in their expression, monumental sculptures.


In the spirit of postmodernity, Skalický connects the past to the present, durability with fragility, beauty and ugliness, a serious, existential expression with humour and irony. Examining his oeuvre, we must confirm the words of the famous art historian Douglas Crimp (1944– 2019), who summarises art working with appropriation in a postmodern manner: “We are not in search of sources or origins, but of structures of signification: underneath each picture there is always another picture”. The modification of the historical sculptural approach thus brings up a number of questions, including questions about original authorship, originality, and how the Allegory of Justice from the attic of of the institutional court in Brno found itself in a former glass factory in Smíchov, Prague.


Martin Skalický: Allegory
Galerie Kostka
19. 11.–9. 1. 2022
curator: Eva Riebová

show opening: 18 November as part of the Public House event

Additional program: 
5. 12., 16:00 exhibition guided tour | free entry 

Curator's text
Exhibition photos by Katarína Hudačinová