The Pudil Family Foundation Supported the Exhibition Third Mind. Jiří Kovanda and the (Im)possibility of Collaboration
No two minds ever come together without, thereby, creating a third, invisible, intangible force which may be likened to a “third mind”.
William Burroughs and Brion Gysin, The Third Mind (1965)
As part of its autumn programme, the National Gallery in Prague organized an exhibition celebrating 40 years of the work of Jiří Kovanda (b.1953). The Third Mind: Jiří Kovanda and the (Im)possibility of Collaboration considers the collaborative aspects of the artist’s oeuvre. Many of Kovanda’s works arose out of cooperation and dialogue with other artists close to him, and include collages, installations, sculptures and performances that blur the dividing line between everyday life and art.
For Kovanda, creative collaboration is a fundamental tenet of his methodological approach. The results of the artist’s interactions with both colleagues and the public are presented in the gallery as an art that in many ways seems like a game. There is a playfulness about the way we enter and leave the exhibition: on arrival we are drawn into two labyrinths – one taking us back to Kovanda’s Vienna exhibition, the other introducing us to some of his early work.
The exhibition owes its title, The Third Mind, to the ideas of William Burroughs and Brion Gysin, who suggest that two minds coming together give rise to a third mind.
With his unmistakeable style, Jiří Kovanda is one of the most important contemporary Czech artists. He received international acclaim through his actions and interventions in public spaces in the 1970s and 1980s. His work is characterized by a subtlety, lightness of touch and anti-monumentality that can sometimes even push the limits of visibility. Kovanda played a major role in reintegrating the art of the former Eastern Bloc into the European and international art community.
The Third Mind: Jiří Kovanda and the (Im)possibility of Collaboration can be seen at the Trade Fair Palace (Veletržní palác) of the National Gallery in Prague from 5 October 2016 to15 January 2017. For a full programme of accompanying events, view here. The exhibition is curated by Adam Budak.
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.