ARTIST PROFILE

Jiří Žák

  • Czech Republic (b. 1989 in Zlín)
  • Currently in Prague.
Logika magiky

Logika magiky

  • 2019
  • Video
  • 15 min, 40 sec

  • Starring Jan Kačer. Keywords: the critical reading of Laterna magika; autobiography as a method; spectacle as political propaganda for export; sexism of Laterna magika; the modernist form which failed; Chekhov's Black Monk;

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    Logika magiky | 2019

Logika magiky is a video-essay reflecting the phenomenon of Laterna magika which was the first multimedia theatre in the world and is associated with the unprecedented success of Czechoslovakia at the Brussels Expo in 1958 and with many remarkable artists such as Alfréd Radok and Josef Svoboda. Laterna Magika is a mixture of genres and formats and full of different contexts: cultural, technological, political. In the video-essay Logika magiky the famous Czech actor Jan Kačer is reading a text which deals with a history of Laterna magika on several layers. The text itself is a confession of artist Jiří Žák who work within the research project that dealt with Laterna magika and was organized by the National Film Archive in Prague. In the text, Žák is elaborating the critical reading of images from Laterna magika, especially the objectifying of women and also the spectacularity and emptiness of a lot of Laterna's shows which were basically used by Czechoslovakia as kind of propaganda for foreign export. Actor Jan Kačer, who was part of the two most artistically valuable shows of Laterna magika - Černý mnich (Black Monk) and Vivisekce (Vivisection) - is not just confronted with the critique but he becomes the voice of the critique. The character of a black monk which he played in the show of the same name (an adaptation of Chekhov's short story) becomes in the video-essay Logika magiky the symbol of the modernistic form which for several reasons failed to fulfill the artistic ideals. ________________________________________________________________ See the video here - https://vimeo.com/365295655