Ivan Kafka, untitled catalog for the exhibition "dokumentace 76-85".

Prague: USNV, [1985]. Quarto (29.5 × 21 cm). Original pictorial wrappers; [18] leaves on stiff paper stock, unpaginated, two of them folding. Very good. Item #4641

Rare catalog printed for the unofficial retrospective exhibition organized at the Institute of Macromolecular Chemistry of the Czechoslovak Academy of Science. With a striking group of photographs, the book documents Kafka's unique large-scale land art installations, which usually situate large minimalist objects within the natural landscape. Kafka, born in 1952, developed this genre since the late 1970s, during the height of the restrictive Czech "Normalization" regime, when non-conformist artists were treated with great suspicion and often persecuted. The author's own documentation is supplemented by superb photographs by the performance artist Tomáš Ruller, Hana Hamplová, Miroslav Jodas, and Pavla Michálková. Typography and overall design by Kafka. Curiously, the catalogue was printed surreptitiously by an acquaintance of Kafka's at the Pankrác prison printing office (USNV Praha, or Útvar Sboru nápravné výchovy) in Prague. With introductory texts by Josef Hlavácek and František Šmejkal, as well as a biographical overview, a list of exhibitions, and a bibliography.

A scarce document of the unofficial Czech art scene in the 1980s. KVK, OCLC show the copies at Tate Library, Bibliotheca Albertina, and Duke University.

Price: €400.00