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16″ high x 16″ wide x 5″ deep
Stacho is a truly flexible and versatile artist. The exceptional education he received at the secondary school and later at the Academy, combined with relentless, intensive artistic endeavour, enabled him to acquire excellent general skills across the field of fine arts. His paintings, sculptures and especially his drawings have been the subject of collectors’ interest and admiration for years, as have his glass objects. Yet it is his extraordinary devotion to glass that has made him stand out as a glass artist characterised by his stubborn insistence on maintaining the highest standards of glassmaking craftsmanship and purity of expression. His attitude to glass and to art in general might be defined as a refusal of compromise combined with an unflinching emphasis on the quality of each and every work of art without exception.
Hot glass techniques were particularly significant for Stacho’s work in the early 1990s, when his potential as a young artist meshed with the traditional skills of Czech glassmaking and the newly emerging opportunities offered by the transformation of Czech society following the Velvet Revolution, and he was eager to answer the challenge. His daring ideas found their outlet in the astounding possibilities of the hot glass processes that were developed in certain elite glass workshops, thus connecting centuries of European glassmaking experience with the fresh ideas and concepts of the contemporary visual arts.
Stacho carefully chose the best of the many hot-glass techniques in order to create objects of sculptural character decorated in a sophisticated manner resembling painting, while all the lines and shades of surface were the result of thoughtful designs and elaborate work with liquid glass. His objects may at first sight look as though they have been painted on, but they are actually coiled and covered with lines, scraps and sheets of coloured glass treated with heat. The surface of the sculptures meets the body of the sculpture. Both parts incorporate the artist’s message and unite with complex and inseparable results. The series of objects entitled “Triangles”, created between 1993 and 1998, or “Mediums” from 1999 are the best examples of this line of work.
The diversification of glass production and the specialisation of European and Czech glassmakers brought to the fore what was to become a widespread phenomenon: cast glass. Essentially, cast glass became a world phenomenon driven by the need to search for new means of artistic expression and simultaneously to establish a sort of independence of the artist of the traditional methods of glass production. Cast glass extended the possibilities of glassmaking and offered refreshing opportunities for experimenting with technologies and shaping traditional material in novel ways. Ever since the 1950s, Czech glass artists have always been ahead of their time and competition – thanks mainly to the pioneering work of Stanislav Libensky and many of his contemporaries and successors. These artists paved the way for art glass and introduced numerous ground-breaking alternatives to the time-proven methods.
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