Fakulta designu a umění Ladislava Sutnara

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Ladislav Sutnar

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Ladislav Sutnar, one of the most important figures of Czech inter-war Modernism and a leading figure of American and international art and design, has a pre-eminent status among famous people born in Pilsen. Given Sutnar’s wide-ranging activities and the ever-broadening spectrum of subjects taught at the Ladislav Sutnar´s Faculty of Design and Art, the current Faculty of Art and Design, it was only a matter of time before his legacy would intersect with our school´s path to the future. On a symbolic level this happened in May 2011, when, following reconstruction of its interior, the former University Gallery reopened as the Ladislav Sutnar Gallery. A month later, our gallery and school received a visit from Sutnar’s son, Radoslav L. Sutnar, who granted his official permission to use his father’s name and one of his logos.


In the case of Ladislav Sutnar, whose life and work are clearly intertwined with educational activity, it is difficult to find a field of artistic expression in which he didn’t achieve success and at the same time open up new horizons. It is no surprise that during his life he received numerous awards and commendations. Just as an example we can mention his successes from the inter-war period – such as his silver medal for toy design at the International Exposition of Modern Industrial and Decorative Arts in Paris in 1925, his gold medals for exhibition design at the International Exposition in Barcelona in 1929 and at the Milan Triennale in 1936. He also received posthumous awards – in October 1979 he was inducted into the Hall of Fame of the New York Art Directors Club. In 2001 he was awarded a State Order of Merit for Culture in memoriam by President Václav Havel.

Despite his international fame, very few citizens of Pilsen know Ladislav Sutnar. The time has therefore come to return Ladislav Sutnar to his native city – and return to him his birthplace that is now making clear its allegiance to his name. The transformation of the former University Gallery into the Ladislav Sutnar Gallery in 2011 was just the first step in this process.


In October 2012, Ladislav Sutnar was posthumously awarded the Honorary citizenship of the city of Pilsen for his worldwide significant contribution in the field of graphic design and visual communication, and for the support of the Czechoslovak anti-Nazi and anti-communist resistance. Following this act, Sutnar's native home in the Dominican street unveiled a bronze plaque designed by the student of the Ladislav Sutnar´s Faculty of Design and Art Jakub Orava. As part of the grand opening of the new building of our school that was held the same day the Ladislav Sutnar Gallery opened a poster exhibition of Sutnar's work entitled Paths of New Typography. We believe that Sutnar's timeless vision and principles of his work will be the cornerstone of further development of the Faculty of Art and Design.

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