Klatovy / Klenová Gallery celebrates Zbyšek Sion’s 80th birthday

To mark the 80th birthday of Zbyšek Sion (*12. 4. 1938), the leader of the Czech informel movement, the Klatovy / Klenová Gallery, in cooperation with curator Milan Dospěl, has prepared a retrospective exhibition titled Zbyšek Sion / Paintings. Informel, also called Art Brut or Outsider Art, spread in the Czech Republic in the 1950s as an (informal) protest capturing existential angst, urgency and solitude in the totalitarian regime. 

This phase of Sion’s work is represented by the painting Large Gate (1960), which comes from the collection of The Pudil Family Foundation. As a raw painting, Large Gate sets a mirror up to the societal anxiety Sion felt strongly in the grip of the totalitarian era. Its white stripe promises hope, yet it gets lost in the black and azure cosmic space. 

Zbyšek Sion standing before the painting Wrestlers (1976-1977). Foto : Jiří Strašek
Zbyšek Sion standing before the painting Wrestlers (1976-1977). Foto : Jiří Strašek
Zbyšek Sion, Large Gate, 1960, oil on canvas, 74 x 98 cm.
Zbyšek Sion, Large Gate, 1960, oil on canvas, 74 x 98 cm.

Aside from informel, the exhibition also shows Sion’s figurative work from the 1950s, when he studied in the atelier of Jiří Horník (1916-1961) at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague. This early work, together with informel and structural abstraction, makes up the first circuit of the exhibition. The second then introduces the painter’s fanciful surrealism as well as his current mosaic-like structures. Through 56 paintings, the exhibition looks at various phases of Sion’s artistic development over the 60 years of his career.

The exhibition Zbyšek Sion / Paintings as well as the canvas Large Gate can be found at the Galerie U Bílého jednorožce in Klatovy daily except Mondays from 10am to 12pm and 1pm to 5pm, until 3rd June 2018.     

View into the exhibition Zbyšek Sion / Paintings, Galerie U Bílého jednorožce. Foto : Jiří Strašek
View into the exhibition Zbyšek Sion / Paintings, Galerie U Bílého jednorožce. Foto : Jiří Strašek
View into the exhibition Zbyšek Sion / Paintings, Galerie U Bílého jednorožce. Foto : Jiří Strašek
View into the exhibition Zbyšek Sion / Paintings, Galerie U Bílého jednorožce. Foto : Jiří Strašek

The Pudil Family Foundation is an open non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the understanding and appreciation of Czech and international modern and contemporary art through the realization of innovative exhibitions, research and educational projects. 

For more information regarding the Foundation and our projects, visit www.pudilfamilyfoundation.org.