Jaromír Funke and the Amateur Avant-Garde, National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC



Jaromír Funke, Spiral (Spirala), 1924
Gelatin silver print, 23.3 x 28.4 cm
Collection National Gallery of Art

May 3 – August 9, 2009

Jaromír Funke (1896–1945) was one of the foremost photographers of the 1920s and 1930s in Czechoslovakia, a country that stood at the forefront of creative photography during these two decades. In the first extensive presentation of Funke’s work outside Europe, some 70 works by the artist and leading contemporaries—including Josef Sudek (1896–1976) and Eugen Wiškovský (1888–1964)—will position his career at the center of an important, if often overlooked, history of modernist photography. Funke defined his personal artistic vision in dialogue with the mainstream amateur movement, as well as national and international avant-garde art—Devĕtsil in Prague, and cubism, surrealism, and the Bauhaus abroad.