The National Gallery Prague prepared a retrospective of the work of František Kupka 1871–1957 in collaboration with the French Reunion de musées nationaux – Grand Palais and Ateneum Art Museum in Helsinki, Finland.
The exhibition shows Kupka’s entire oeuvre, from his early works of the 1890s to his abstract artworks of the 1950s. Owing to cooperation with the French partner, a unique collection of oil paintings, works on paper, prints and documentary material could be assembled, and was presented in the Grand Palais in Paris in spring 2018, now in the National Gallery Prague (in an altered form) and then in the Ateneum Art Museum in Helsinki in spring 2019. The Prague exhibition shows artworks from the National Gallery Prague as well as the Centre Pompidou in Paris, the Guggenheim Museum in New York and the Albertina Museum in Vienna.
The chronological exhibition is divided by theme to allow the viewer to follow the artist’s path from symbolism to abstraction (of which Kupka was an originator). The retrospective focuses on Kupka’s symbolist paintings, first expressionist portraits, path to abstract art, colour verticals, vocabulary of forms and colours, machinism and geometric abstraction. The many artworks on paper show Kupka as a satirical draughtsman and brilliant illustrator, an artist interested in philosophy, Greek and Roman art, religion and science.