Czech Embassy, NCCA mount comics ex­hibit

Manila Times - - Expats & Diplomats - BY ARLO CUSTODIO


In cel­e­bra­tion of the 100th year of Czech Comics, the Czech Embassy in Manila has col­lab­o­rated with the Na­tional Com­mis­sion for Cul­ture and the Arts (NCCA) for an ex­hibit of famed works of notable artists and writ­ers from the Cen­tral Euro­pean coun­try.

Called “Mean­while, Else­where” the show was in­au­gu­rated on Septem­ber 11 and runs un­til the 30th at the NCCA Gallery on Gen­eral Luna Street, In­tra­muros, Manila.

“The ex­hi­bi­tion forms part of the com­mem­o­ra­tions of the ma­jor an­niver­saries of 2018 – the centenary foun­da­tion of Cze­choslo­vakia ( 1918), 70 years from the es­tab­lish­ment of the in­fa­mous com­mu­nist regime (1948) and

25 years of the cre­ation of the

Czech Repub­lic

( 1993),” Czech Am­bas­sador to the Philip­pines

Jaroslav Olsa Jr. told the guests and the me­dia on open­ing night.

While Amer­i­can Comics is laden with su­per­heroes, Czech’s delved

- tion sto­ries, like his fa­vorite comics while grow­ing up.

“Su­per­heroes are a a cre­ation of a cap­i­tal­ist so­ci­ety, whereas the Czech Repub­lic (for­merly Cze­choslo­vakia) had been un­der Com­mu­nism, so su­per­hero sto­ries were banned,” the Czech Am­bas­sador told The

Mani­la­Times in a tete-a-tete as he showed guests around the dis­plays. He said the ex­hi­bi­tion will also be brought to Davao City.

Cu­ra­tor To­mas Proku­pek, mean­while, ex­plained that the ex­hi­bi­tion not only shows the themes and au­thors in all their re­spec­tive his­tor­i­cal pe­ri­ods un­til to­day, but also re­caps a tu­mul­tuous na­tional his­tory through comics that aptly re­flects the his­tor­i­cal, po­lit­i­cal and cul­tural changes of the Czech Repub­lic.

- east Asia, Proku­pek was pre­vi­ously in Ja­pan for a sim­i­lar ex­hibit.

Sam­ples of dif­fer­ent il­lus­tra­tions are show­cased to de­pict the his­tory and evo­lu­tion of Czech Comics and how they were af­fected by the times. Vis­i­tors of all ages can en­joy the ex­hi­bi­tion as it con­tains nu­mer­ous orig­i­nal books and mag­a­zines.

Filipino artists in comics pub­lished in Czech

Am­bas­sador Olsa also men­tioned (in fact cited in the au­dio-vis­ual pre­sen­ta­tion or AVP) that two comic book Filipino artists – work­ing as part of an in­ter­na­tional comic book project – have had their works pub­lished to crit­i­cal ac­claim in the Czech Repub­lic. As re­ported in TheSun­day

TimesMagazine in Au­gust last year, 33-year-old AJ Bernardo and 29- year- old Josel Ni­co­las have il­lus­trated mul­ti­ple sto­ries for Welsh writer James Stafford for the graphic novel “The Sor­row­ful Putto of Prague.” Prague is the cap­i­tal of the Czech Repub­lic.

Orig­i­nally launched in 2011 as a we­b­comic, the comic was col­lected into book form and pub­lished in

by Argo, one of the Czech Repub­lic’s ma­jor pub­lish­ers.

Hol­ly­wood su­per­star Sa­muel L. Jack­son’s praise of the comic book to his six mil­lion Twit­ter fol­low­ers helped in mak­ing the book gain pop­u­lar­ity.


(From left) NCCA com­mis­sioner Teddy Co, Czech Am­bas­sador to the Philip­pines Jaroslav Olsa Jr. and NCCA ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor Rico Pableo Jr. cut the cer­e­mo­nial rib­bon at the open­ing of the ‘Mean­while, Else­where’ Czech Comics ex­hi­bi­tion.

Cu­ra­tor To­mas Proku­pek

‘Sci-fi Mutiny of the Brains’ by Va­clav Sorel and Fran­tisek Ko­bik, 1978.

The Czech Am­bas­sador ex­plains the role of comics in the Com­mu­nist Czech so­ci­ety.

Filipinos AJ Bernardo and Josel Ni­co­las' works are fea­tured in this for­eign comic book.

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