FRANTIŠEK KRATOCHVÍL

born in Prague, 1934

Sculptor, painter, graphic artist, graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague, but also an actor, writer, director and stage designer. All these are professions that passed through his life on his way on the stage, which in his case literally means the world. In 1961 he co-founded the Black Theatre of Jiří Srnec where he worked until 1974. For many years he collaborated as a co-author of a profile of the new company. A new profession opened for Kratochvíl and thus the whole world. He has not known anything like this as a sculptor, the moment of an immediate response. "Theatre is a wonderful means of direct communication, while a statue, as a result of a creative effort is much more mysterious, an introverted object. In addition, the theatre gives you an opportunity of activities. You can draw, make up stories and play, you can do everything at once and that is what I like. My connection with the Black Light Theatre exceeded any ideas or forms of employment by far. I lived through it, my life experience is connected with it. It`s the kind of a connection between a man and an activity which can be realized only if you consider this activity to be a self-realization, the part of your inner self. That`s what it was - and is. "- František Kratochvíl.

Black light theatre

After that, he founded an independent author`s "Black Light Theatre of František Kratochvíl" dedicated to animation of drawings. Since then he has been collaborating with a short film, Czech Television and television studios abroad (Germany, Finland, Austria, France, Poland, etc.). All new scenes of this young new theatre were based primarily on the fact that an object came to life on stage. The fact that young artists had the ability to express this revival led to success and spontaneous acceptance. The important thing was that their scenes were imaginative, sophisticated and unpredictable for viewers. This great result lay in the youth of the entire company. Actors, authors and theatre itself.
During the theatrical activity when the company of the Black Light Theatre travelled around the world theatre festivals, the author exhibited occasionally humorous graphics and drawings.
Most of the topics in theatre production, graphics, drawings and paintings relate to the relationship between a man and a woman expressed always with humor and metaphor. In 2014, he created a cycle of paintings – a book "Cherchez la Femme" based on these ideas and experience.

The book "Cherchez la Femme"

The introduction to this publication was written by František Kratochvíl`s friend, a film and theatre director, screenwriter, winner of two Oscars, three Golden Globes, and a number of other prestigious awards, Miloš Forman: "If a man tells you, that he understands women then it shows that he has never loved anyone (besides himself). I was lucky (or unlucky?) that I was twice in love in life. And I can responsibly tell you that the more I was in love, the less I understood women.
Their moods, reactions, requirements and tears had always caught me off guard. I don`t know the personal life of František Kratochvíl, the author of this book, but take a look at his drawings. This is a pathetic self-defense. This is the testimony, but also the desire for revenge. There is all of our efforts to find the logic in the incredibly rich and mysterious inner life of our loves.
However, don`t be desperate. Whenever you are overcome by anxiety of the inability to understand the soul of your beloved, open this book. You may not be any wiser, but you will feel relieved. "