Jiří Načeradský is one of the leading figures in Czech art of the second half of the 20th century. His work from the latter part of the 1960s culminated in the “Runners” (1967). This famous series is an excellent example of new figurative forms. In the period when abstract art, particularly Art Informel, was still a prevalent style, Načeradský ventured on an exploration of new art forms and shifted the boundaries of creativity in figurative painting. A return to reality, to the perception of life was manifested in art in the renaissance of the figurative and changes in the painting process. Načeradský was one of the first artists to explore and use the principle of appropriation to paraphrase the works of old masters and modernists, and make use of photography and a wide range of expressive and distorted forms. However, his paintings show ironic subtlety with a touch of the grotesque at the same time, acquiring a unique quality and a detached view. Načeradský’s respect for and unconventional approach to tradition has enabled him to achieve an entirely new concept of figurative painting. He became the leading figure of new figurative art and achieved a European status.
In subsequent periods, Načeradský’s creative style evolved and oscillated between the abrupt eruptive form and more rational geometric expression. Drawing has become the building block of his work. To him drawing is a way of thinking, of perceiving and interpreting the world. In many of his series from the seventies, he used his skill in a new way. They are dominated by Kafkaesque and machinist figures of insects, Venus as a symbol of womanhood, and praying mantises. The prevailing erotic tone embraces the principle of the origin of life, sensual delight and destructive passions.
During six decades, Načeradský’s work has been a rich source of art forms and new ideas, of vibrations reminiscent of the living matter. The iconic motif of the praying mantis suggests the idea of a passionate artist, absorbed in art, but emerging as a winner.
The exhibition of 110 paintings from the Ivan Melicherčík Collection has been conceived as the collector’s homage to the artist on the occasion of his 75th birthday. Unfortunately, Jiří Načeradský passed away unexpectedly while preparing the exhibition.
Jiří Načeradský, a Czech painter, draughtsman, graphic artist and university teacher, was born on 9 September 1939 in Sedlec in the Czech Republic and died on 16 April 2014 in Prague. 1957 – 1963 Studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague with Professor V. Rada. 1968 – 1970 Artist in Residence in Paris. Discriminated against by the political regime in the 1970s and 1980s, he worked as a restorer of facades of historical buildings. Since 1990 he has worked as Associate Professor, later on Professor at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague and the Faculty of Fine Art of the University of Technology in Brno. Since 1987 he has been a member of the art group 12’15 Pozdě, ale přece (Late, but Anyway).
His works have been included in prestigious art collections in the Czech Republic and abroad (for example the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris has a collection of seven of his drawings). The artist exhibited in major galleries in the Czech Republic and abroad (Vienna, Washington, New York, Paris, Karlsruhe, Berlin, Moscow, Bratislava, Budapest, Prague, Stockholm, Helsinki, London...).