BY MARIE JIRÁSKOVÁ & PAVEL JIRÁSEK
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Czechoslovakia’s unique culture of puppet theater reached a glorious apex between about 1900 and 1950, and its visual style was integral to the development of modernist and contemporary theater and animation. The Puppet and the Modern looks at this incredibly fertile phase in puppetry in Bohemia and Moravia and traces the development of stage design and stage technologies, also focusing on the connection of artists from disciplines and styles--designers, carvers, painters and scenographers--to the development of avant-garde and modernist currents in twentieth-century art. Narrated with text by scholars Marie Jirásková and Pavel Jirásek, this richly illustrated, epic (456-page) volume begins in the Art Nouveau and Symbolist eras, tracing the development of Czech puppetry through its Expressionist incarnations and on to its radical reconception and renaissance as an art during the Cubist and Art Deco epochs. A truly revelatory publication, The Puppet and the Modern includes gorgeous color photographs of individual puppets drawn from public and private Czech puppet collections and supplements them with archival images of performances, sets, sketches, posters, programs, periodicals, illustrations and caricatures.
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