Od listopadu do prosince poznávali studenti a pedagogové australské umělecké školy College of Art v Queenslandu život České republiky a Polska. V rámci projektu navštívili také jižní Čechy, konkrétně Český Krumlov a Tábor. Aby práce zde nepřišla vniveč, fotografové připravili výstavu Tábor očima Australana, která bude od 1. do 10 května k vidění ve výstavních prostorách Staré radnice.
„Tábor jsem několikrát navštívil již v roce 2012 a naprosto mi přirostl k srdci. Táborská výstava je první výstavou v ČR našich studentů a zároveň odrazovým můstkem pro rozsáhlejší projekty v ČR, Polsku a Austrálii.“ říká kurátor evropských výstav Tadeusz Jacek Rybinski.
Vernisáž výstavy se uskuteční ve čtvrtek 1. května od 17.30 hodin, fotografie si můžete prohlédnout do 10. května zdarma.
„Při poznávací cestě navštívila australská skupina umělců také Tábor, který jim přirostl k srdci. Proto, díky vstřícnosti Husitského muzea, vznikla tato slideshow výstava, která je speciálně zaměřena pouze na život v Táboře. Jedná se převážně o dokumentární fotografie nabízející tak trochu jiný úhel pohledu na naše město, pohled umělce nezatíženého evropskou historií,“ říká zdejší iniciátor akce Martin Tlapa.
Tábor je první české město, kde se queenslandští studenti fotografie a filmu prezentují. Expozice navazuje na sérii výstav australských umělců, které se uskutečnily v Polsku v letech 2010 až 2013. Tam byly vystavovány fotografie, obrazy, grafiky ale také šperky.
„Tábor má své speciální kvality. Vyplněný starými barevnými stavbami dává městu krásný pocit patiny. Ze všech míst, která jsem navštívil, měl Tábor největší osobitost,“ nešetří chválou jedna z fotografek Jess Collins.
V současné době v brisbanské universitní galerii probíhá výstava z celého Česko-Polského pobytu s celou řadou doprovodných programů o Polsku a ČR pod názvem Dérive.
Jak svůj pobyt v Česku popisují samotní studenti nabízíme v originálním znění a s ukázkama fotografií dále v článku. Fotky v plné velikosti naleznete v galerii pod článkem.
I absolutely loved Cesky Krumlov. The people are friendly, the architecture is beautiful. When we first arrived it was like stepping into the Middle Ages. It was a big culture shock after coming from Australia.
One of my favourite moments while visiting Prague was walking across the Charles Bridge. I spent a lot of time wandering around looking at all the little stalls selling art, jewellery, and souvenirs.
Jess Collins - Tábor Jess Collins - Český Krumlov
Tabor has a special quality to it, filled with old colourful buildings the give the town a beautiful grunge feel. Of all the places we visited, Tabor definitely had the most character.
Brisbane is very much of the modern era, with skyscrapers squished into the centre of a large urban sprawl. The cities of the Czech Republic are very different, with hundreds of years of history ingrained into the town’s layout and architecture. Even in large metropolitan areas you get a sense a majesty that you can’t experience in Brisbane. Such history has a downside however, with the large tourist pull of these famous cities leading to a distressing number of tacky souvenir shops and guided tours.
Chris Bowes - Jordan, Tabor Chris Bowes - Manekyn, Kutna Hora
Each town we visited had a unique and homely atmosphere. Buildings hundreds of years old still stand, each with its own story and place in history, and many old traditions are still kept alive. These quirks give a rich cultural experience, and reward travellers who explore the more obscure parts of town. There is very little of this culture in Brisbane, so I found it interesting that the Czech Republic seemed to amalgamate modern society with historical traditions.
I felt most welcome when visiting smaller towns, particularly Tabor. The people we met where generous and friendly like most Australians. This was less of the case in the larger cities; however I understood that everyone must get tired of having to deal with such large numbers of tourists. After a couple of days in Prague I had managed to seek out a few good bars and restaurants, and in all the towns there were places we could go where the locals made it feel like home. Throughout the trip it seemed that the smaller the town, the more traditional the lifestyle, which is similar to what you see in Australia.
I would definitely visit again, I’d really like to get away from the tourist hotspots and see more of the countryside. The small towns and train rides from place to place were my favourite parts of the trip, and I think they would offer a lot photographically.
The incredible food and beer! I stuffed myself with the whole trip for a fraction of what it would cost me in Brisbane.
I think each town had a unique feel and way of life - Prague was very much the busy city and full of tourists until you stepped a little further from the centre, while Tabor had a beautiful calm atmosphere. I think in many ways it reminded me of my own home town, small and quiet and yet it was so different because there is such a strong sense of history. You can feel it in the buildings and streets, the old and new side by side.
In each town I visited I felt like the locals had a great respect for their history and were eager to share the stories and history of their home. It is very different to Australia - I felt that everywhere I looked in Czech Republic there was a rich mix of the modern and historical.
Ariel Cameron - Tábor Ariel Cameron - Český Krumlov
I don’t feel like I stopped in any one place long enough to notice behavioural differences, generally we were met with kindness and generosity as visitors but I would like to spend longer in places like Tabor to really the understand daily life there.
I would love to come back to Czech Republic. I feel like I only saw the tiniest part of the country. I would like to explore more of the country side and smaller towns, away from the tourist centres and spend more time getting to know people.
I wasn’t so much surprised, but I didn’t expect to experience the independent art in Czech Republic - I was lucky enough to meet some Czech artists in Prague and was really excited by the contemporary art scene.
If I lived in the Czech Republic Tabor is the kind of place I would go to escape the madness of everyday life. It’s the perfect distance away from the city and the hospitality is the warmest I experienced on our trip. With so many attractions in walking distance it made sitting around a guilty pleasure. What I loved most about Tabor was the quaint architecture; it’s just so different to what we’re surrounded by in Australia. Tabor felt less of a tourist attraction than Prague but you could put this down to the time of year.
In Prague I walked until my legs felt like they were going to drop off. Down every cobble stoned street there was something so culturally different to what I’m used to. The simple things like hot spiced wine in the streets to the abundance of Art Galleries put me in a sensory overload. However, I found it difficult to see the darker side of Prague with the begging locals who brought home the reality of how some people live in this beautiful city.
Elise Searson - Český Krumlov Elise Searson - Tábor
Cesky Krumlov was a very contrasting experience from Tabor and Prague. I wasn’t sure what to expect and I left wishing I had warn more clothes that day because I ended up spending most of it indoors to keep warm. Most days are 25+ in Brisbane so I had no idea what I was in for. Cesky Krumlov felt very touristy and a lot less authentic than Tabor, which I didn’t enjoy. However the views from the castle were amazing.
I loved my time so much that coming back to the Czech Republic and visiting more of the countryside is on the cards for next winter. It was charming, affordable and visually inspiring. However next time round I’ll make sure to learn more Czech.
The streets of southern Bohemia were lined with bare branches, richly coloured leaves lay on the ground below where they had fallen as winter encroached. Particularly in Brisbane where we come from in a tropical part of Australia, this is a rare sight. We can hardly own to have an Autumn, let alone a winter. We have a climate so temperate that seasonal change is barely notable in the environment, but for the dry grass in our gardens at the height of summer when there has been no rain. A highlight for me on our last night in Prague was the first snow of the winter. I, along with a few of my companions had never seen, or been in snow in our life. At midnight as it began to fall thickly, we had a snowball fight and made a poor attempt at a snowman in the street outside the hotel. For us it was pure magic and arrived just in time for us to experience it before we left.
Jacqueline Bawtree - Tábor Jacqueline Bawtree - Český Krumlov
Bohemia is full of imagery from the fairytales of my childhood. Cesky Krumlov was especially magical, even in the dull weather we encountered. The castle towering over the town, bears marauding in the former moat, the river winding around, artisanal shops and cosy cafes. The discovery of the restaurant in the castle gardens early in our visit enchanted each of us as we sipped mulled wine by the fire before commencing back down the hill to explore the castle and town. We have no castles, forts or hamlets in Australia. The only bear to be seen is the Koala. And mulled wine can only be truly enjoyed in the southern states at the height of their cooler winters.
The political systems of Eastern Europe in the 20th Century have seen our Czech peers encounter such a different life to the democratic peace and freedom of affluent Australia. Our government system is not perfect, but most of us have enjoyed basic human rights, a relatively stable economy and the innate ability to trust our neighbour and, to be honest, for the most part our government. In Prague particularly, but also Tabor, for me, there remains a sense of ongoing unrest as the country continues to re-shape following the Communist era. Perhaps it was just perceived based on my basic knowledge of Czech history. However, I felt through my visit, I gained a greater understanding of the time it takes for a country to heal and recover. I sensed the Czech Republic is still very much in this process only 24 years after the Velvet Revolution. Still re-defining the parameters of the nation’s future.
The people we met were friendly but guarded. Even in the shops and restaurants there is a reserve, which is unfamiliar to we gregarious Australians. But generally people were friendly and, in particular at FAMU – the film school – in Prague, it was nice to meet some locals in a commonly understood environment.
Two things surprised me in Prague. One was the regularity of street protests, perhaps emphasised given our first visit to Wenceslas Square was on 17th November. The second surprise was the number of tourists even as the winter months approached. Although I can see why the Christmas markets are a drawcard. However like Florence in Italy, there was a sense that barely anyone you pass in the street is actually Czech. Perhaps love for your beautiful capital city has gradually begun pushing locals out.
With a love of art I would certainly love to return to the Czech Republic to emerge myself in more exhibitions and cultural experiences, such as the ballet we attended at the magnificent State Theatre. And also to see the countryside during the spring or summer!
Walking through the streets of South Bohemia was like stepping into another world, one separated by sea but strangely connected technologically. The architecture played a dazzling role in immersing the traveller into a history well preserved. Both on the large scale, Prague, and the smaller districts of Cesky Krumlov and Tabor, each had a distinctive vibe.
The people of Prague often felt distant and uninterested in the comings and goings of visitors, for the short time here as a traveller, a head strong and individualised city seems an apt description. In was in the small towns of South Bohemia I found a slower, kinder (but still distinctly Czech) community of people.
Cale Searston - Tábor Cale Searston - Český Krumlov
Tabor prospered with the smiles of strangers and intimate social gatherings common, the tourist traffic was slower and the town much better for it.
Cesky Krumlov similar to Tabor in majesty and immersion, but more tourism focused. This was damaging to the experience of the historical sites or even in simply noticing ‘local’ people.
The Czech Republic had a unique charm, in returning I would focus my trip more towards the landscape and less crowded towns and tracks of the country. From my experience, this was the most memorial, welcoming and exciting aspect of my visit to South Bohemia.
Prague is the first city that I landed in Czech Republic and Europe. Such a lovely place! Full of beautiful things in eyes, the enormous and delicate buildings, the graffiti, the churches, the statues on the squares, the museums, and the crafts stalls….
When I climbed onto the top of the Astronomical Clock Tower, I’d got this astonishing view and utterly immersed in the dreamlike colours.
Fanghzou Jin - Tábor Fanghzou Jin - Český Krumlov
Cesky Krumlov is just delicate! Those crafts shops, the Castle… something that impressed me the most - the place full of artistic naivety and ingenuity. I felt like I was with Krtek, with Pinocchio, with mud dolls, with unicorn and clowns. I don’t think I would ever feel bored if I could live there.
I won’t say how much I love Tabor. I might not be able to describe my love towards this tranquil, old town. I walked on the alleys and felt the sky was so close to me. I walked into the forest and lay down on the grass so, that I heard birds tweeting and the rill flowing happily. That was a moment that I felt far away from the madding crowd. That was a moment that I was the only one with the Mother Nature.
The Czech Republic is layered with beauty. Travelling from Australia, you can sense a certain mystique about the country, within seconds of arriving. To me, it felt as though I was entering into a completely new and unknown world; nothing in the Czech Republic is like that of the place I call home.
Endless cobblestone streets and sky-high decorative architecture adorn the city of Prague. It is easy to lose yourself amidst the fairy tale allure of this city, but once you’ve turned a few too many wrong corners and gone down a number of wrong twisting paths, the city starts to reveals its true beauty; the people and the history. This was most evident to me in the town of Tábor or the outskirts of Cesky Krumlov.
Asleigh May - Tábor Asleigh May - Český Krumlov
I fell in love with South Bohemia on a rickety train ride between two cities. The beauty of experiencing a country and its natural landscape from the window of a speedy, European train is indescribable. For a moment in time, a vision of open fields, spindly trees and dark forest flash before your eyes. Small towns appear and quickly disappear, and you are only given a few seconds to take in a lifetime of history. I would like to visit more of these smaller towns, the places where the Czech culture is more authentic than it is in the bigger, tourist cities. I feel like there is a lot more than could be learn from these people and places.
I was blown away by the beauty that is evident in all areas the Czech republic. All towns across the country that we either visited, or that I saw from a train or bus window, have an amazing aesthetic about them. I thought the ability to preserve this beauty, not only in the main tourist destinations but also in little towns like Tábor, was incredible. The architecture seems to blend in to the beauty of the natural landscapes as well and the two combine to give off the visual of a fairytale-like landscape.