Jindřich Chalupecký Society is a platform for Czech post-revolutionary and contemporary art in international context. In collaboration with a number of partner institutions throughout the Czech Republic and internationally, we organize exhibitions, public programs, residencies for artists and curators, educational and publication projects. Since 1990, the Society awards the Jindřich Chalupecký Award for visual artists up to the age of 35. The Society is named in honor of leading Czech theorist and critic of visual arts and literature, essayist and philosopher Jindřich Chalupecký (1910–1990). The Society aims to initiate and support innovative and experimental artistic, curatorial and research activities and to contribute to strengthening the role of contemporary Czech art in the local and international environment, including the regions outside the main cultural centers. The Society stands both for significant continuity and flexibility, constantly re-examining its forms and possibilities as an organization that is actively approaching the most contemporary events both on and outside the art scene.
Jindrich Chalupecky Society is part of the Feminist (art) institution platform and therefore the whole team is aiming to follow the FI codex of principles in its operation. We try to build more horizontal co-working methods, sharing equally all information and major responsibilities. Our long-term interests are being developed in a research and exhibition project called Islands: Possibilities of Togetherness which focuses on topics such as coexistence, collaboration and solidarity. After two initial exhibitions presented last year and curated by individual members of our team, we are now working on a third chapter, which is curated collectively by five of us in close collaboration with six Czech artists working on new commissions, besides a number of international artists and contributors who share existing works as well as specific responses to the topic. This project, called Beyond Nuclear Family, was so far presented in a form of a two-day event consisting of a pop-up show and series of live performances, workshops, discussions and screenings and currently it is evolving in a larger exhibition format. It investigates diverse family models, looking for alternative scenarios to the politically or economically shaped normative of the “nuclear” – exploring non-western, non-binary, chosen, communal or utopian forms of family and looking for inspirational models to challenge conformist structures.
Intro to team & project
presenting the project
Beyond Nuclear Family
CCA Prague, June 27. – 28., 2020, Art in General, NYC (postponed)
Beyond Nuclear Family is a research and exhibition project prepared for Art in General in New York and Centre for Cotemporary Art Prague. It is a third chapter of the Jindřich Chalupecký Society’s long-term project Islands: Possibilities of Togetherness, which presents experimental exhibition formats, research-based and discoursive projects in collaboration with international partner organizations. The project explores the themes of togetherness and coexistence in the challenged contemporary societies, while each chapter contributes to the topic from a particular perspective, such as the theme of connectivity or interspecies solidarity.
The chapter Beyond Nuclear Family assesses the family, one of the basic units of togetherness in human communities. It is aimed primarily at providing a critical review of modern, western family model and assesses its historical and contemporary, geographical and cultural, utopian and fictitious alternatives. A nuclear family defined as the marital partnership of a man and a woman living with their biological children represents an unwritten status quo in western civilization. It has become a kind of benchmark against which other family constellations are measured.
Video by Giulio Zannol from the Beyond Nuclear Family pop-up which took place on June 27.–28. 2020, music by Egill Sæbjörnsson.
Although the nuclear family is considered and presented as the leading paradigm throughout the political, social and educational system as well as the rule of law in the Euro-American context, in reality, this model represents fewer than 25% families in the USA and less than 20% in the Czech Republic. Two more thirds of the population are thus made up of other forms of family and community life: unions of LGBTQ+ couples, adoptive parents, single parents, chosen families and other constellations. Despite this fact, the image of the typical nuclear family still dominates popular culture and advertising, thus co-shaping the attitudes and expectations of the broader public.
Beyond Nuclear Family is curated by five members of the SJCh team. Each of them is dedicated to one specific sub-topic, and collaborates with selected artists on newly commissioned works for the exhibition. These projects will be complemented by several existing works by Czech and international artists, and the exhibition will also feature public programs, workshops and discoursive events. A part of the exhibition will take a form of a “family album”, which will be filled with drawings and texts or other reflections of the participating artists‘ and authors‘ personal attitudes towards experienced or imagined forms of family arrangements.
Photo-documentation from the installation of Beyond Nuclear Family pop-up (which took place on June 27.–28) at Center for Contemporary Arts Prague and the object of “Bramborárna” in Prague
Photos by František Svatoš
Curated by: Barbora Ciprová, Veronika Čechová, Tereza Jindrová, Karina Kottová and Jakub Lerch (Jindřich Chalupecký Society)
Artists collaborating with the curators on new commissions: Marie Lukáčová, Eva Koťátková, Markéta Magidová, Jiří Skála, Martina Smutná, Vojtěch Rada
Artists collaborating on the Family Album: Khairani Barokka, Catherine Biocca, Pablo Helguera, Nona Inescu, Michelle Lévy, Laure Prouvost, Egill Sæbjörnsson, Tai Shani, Triple Candie, Jakub Woynarowski
Exhibiting artists: Clément Cogitore, Binelde Hyrcan, Jakub Janovský, Lenka Klodová, Mary Maggic, Minh Thang Pham, Jessica E. L. Taylor