Exhibition at Gandy gallery introduces Jiří Valoch through key segments of his work

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Exhibition at Gandy gallery introduces Jiří Valoch through key segments of his work
Installation view.

BRATISLAVA.- Gandy gallery is presenting the first solo exhibition by JIRI VALOCH, the gallery has known Jiri for many years and it is a real joy to present this exhibition in the gallery's 30th anniversary year.

In the Slovak as well as the Czech context, Jiří Valoch is mainly discussed concerning his curatorial and publishing activities. Abroad, he is perceived primarily as an author of visual poetry and conceptual works.

The exhibition, which is part of the celebration of the 30th anniversary of the Gandy gallery, introduces Jiří Valoch through key segments of his work. It developed from the mid-1960s onwards not in isolation beyond the borders of totalitarian Czechoslovakia, but instead in the context of following international developments. Jiří Valoch maintained extensive postal contacts with artists from all over the world. His work thus transcended the geopolitical borders of the time. He drew on the influences of Italian visual poetry and espoused the canon of Western conceptual thought. He created his authentic handwriting, in which, with the help of typescript or a combination of written and visual communication, there is a minimalist fusion of two seemingly incompatible elements: lyrical feeling and rational concept.

The meaning of its title was extremely important for the creation of this exhibition: ordinary words. It is a reflection on what we can and cannot accept as ordinary, ordinarily normal, and not only in the context of working with the structure of language, with which Valoch's work is primarily associated. It points to the importance of social openness in the ability to incorporate otherness into one's life, says the exhibition's curator, Jana Písaříková. As an artist, curator and collector, Jiří Valoch has always pushed the boundaries of art norms. This is extremely important to realise, because his work and curatorial activity, which in the last 10 years is finally beginning to form a respected canon of Czech-Slovak art, was not considered art by many at the time of its inception, even if it was at least completely ordinary art! curator adds. The openness to otherness in this exhibition is also important for me in terms of the fact that Jiří Valoch is not only an artist with whom I collaborate but also a person who - despite common conventions - became part of my family after his illness made it impossible for him to live independently.

The Bratislava exhibition at the Gandy gallery is also the first comprehensive show of his work in Slovakia for the artist in a long time, and we hope it will be an opportunity for him to meet his friends from among the Slovak artists.

Jana Pisaříková (curator and theoretician of Czech art at the Moravian Gallery in Brno.)

Jiří Valoch (*1946, Brno, Czechoslovakia) Is a poet and creator of visual and conceptual poetry, photographic poetry and photographic concepts, minimalist happenings and intervensions in the environment, artis’s books, and text installations. Since 1966 he has also worked as an art critic and curator. In 1974 he published his first monography, Poesia Visiva (Beniamino Carruci publisher, Roma). He studied German and Czech literature and Aesthetics at the College of Philosophy of Masaryk University in Brno (1965 – 1970) From 1972 to 2001 he worked as a curator at the House of art in Brno, preparing exhibitions of Czech artists (V. Boštík, Milan Knížák, Vladimír Boudník, J. Kolář, B. Kolářová, A. Šimotová, L. Novák), after 1990 also international artists (R. P. Lahnse, G. Graser, R. Mieldsam, R. Barry). Starting in the early 1970s he was involved in organising unofficial exhibitions across Czechoslovakia.
In 2015 he donated his collection and archive to the Moravian Gallery in Brno.
Last two year he has been leaving in small village Ludíkov in the Moravian Carst.

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