The small circle of laureates of the prestigious Ladislav Sutnar Prize has five new members since 8 November 2016. They received the award from the hands of Dean Josef Mistera at the fifth annual Ladislav Sutnar Prize awarding ceremony held to celebrate outstanding artists, pedagogues and institutions for their extensive work and significant contribution to the world of art and design. This year´s ceremony also marked 40 years since Ladislav Sutnar´s demise.
We were honored to welcome all the laureates of 2016 in Pilsen for the awards ceremony - graphic designer and typographer Rostislav Vaněk (CZ), art historian and theoretician Tomáš Vlček (CZ), one of the most significat Dutch graphic designers Anthon Beeke, renowned American designer Gere Kavanaugh and one of the most prestigious art universities in the world - The Pratt Institute represented by the provost Kirk Pillow. Ms Zoë Ryan, the director and curator of Architecture and Design at the Art Institute of Chicago, was another special guest who received the award on behalf of the Art Institute of Chicago as the 2015 laureate.
The ceremony was held in presence of the Rector of the University of West Bohemia Miroslav Holeček who emphasized the credo of the university: "We stand behind values which sustain in the ever-changing world" and the fact that art and creativity represent such values. Awarding a prestigious award to outstanding artists and institutions proves the fact that our university supports strongly these values.
Other notable guests included the Mayor of Pilsen Jiří Zrzavecký, the Vice-Mayors Martin Baxa and Petr Náhlík and the political officer of the US Embassy Beth Fernald who stressed the importantce of Ladislav Sutnar as an immigrant for American and worldwide design in the context of current situation in the world.
This year´s ceremony featured live music composed especially for this occasion by Jiri Bezdek from the Department of Music Culture of the Faculty of Education performed by the Pilsen Fanfare Band.
The awards ceremony was preceded by the opening of an open-air exhibition in front of the Education and Research Library of the Pilsen Region in the center of Pilsen. Twenty-one exhibition panels show the development of the project "The Return of Ladislav Sutnar" with the aim to inform the general public about this exceptional Czech-American designer and the activities which have brought him back into the Czech cultural history. The exhibition runs until 30 November 2016.
During their time in Pilsen the laureates joined the representatives of the Ladislav Sutnar Faculty of Design and Art to lay flowers on Ladislav Sutnar´s grave at the Pilsen Central Cemetery and to remember this genius designer. They also visited the Ladislav Sutnar Gallery, saw the memorial plaque on Sutnar´s birth house, toured the famous apartment interiors designed by Adolf Loos, explored Pilsen, enjoyed a social evening on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the University of West Bohemia and much more.