Pavlína Morganová

An Eight-Hour Exhibition and Its Reconstruction (Osmihodinová výstava a její rekonstrukce) by Dalibor Chatrný

Keywords: environment / installation happening participatory practices

On November 15, 1970, an unusual set of nine metal cylinders connected by a sixty-meter string was prepared on the first floor of Procházka Hall in the House of Art (Dům umění), Brno for those invited. The artist, Dalibor Chatrný, was a member of the Brno conceptualist circle, which had an exclusive position within the context of Czechoslovak art. The House of Art and the curator Jiří Valoch were at the center of these activities. Chatrný began the event by throwing one end of a string from a window of the House of Arts and gave the other end to a spectator. What followed was a spontaneous game by audience members who used the string and moved the objects offered by the artist. Since exhibition openings at the House of Art were traditionally held on Sunday mornings, the spectators were able to spend the entire day moving the objects with the strings and thus to actively transform the exhibition under the artist’s supervision. The following week Dalibor Chatrný carried out the ideal reconstruction of the exhibition, this time without spectators, documenting its ideal form. This exhibition experiment brings to a close the free era of the 1960s, and also refers to the unprecedented interest in neo-constructive tendencies and conceptual thinking about the role of a work of art.



Pavlína Morganová – Terezie Nekvindová – Dagmar Svatošová, Výstava jako médium. České umění 1957−1999, AVU, Prague 2020, pp. 514-523.

Dalibor Chatrný, Osmihodinová výstava a její rekonstrukce / Achtstundenausstellung und derer Rekonstruktion, exh. cat., Brno 1970.

Alena Pomajzlová (ed.), The Spaces of Dalibor Chatrný. Anthology of texts on the artist’s oeuvre, Brno 2017.

Date: 15 November 1970

Curator: Jiří Valoch (1946)

Participants: Dalibor Chatrný (1925‒2012) and audience

Location: The Brno House of Arts, Brno