Miluše Roubíčková and René Roubíček are the first to enter the Hall of Fame of the International Glass Symposium IGS. These Czech glass artists had a hand in transformation of glass which thanks to their fundamental contribution became a true art material on a worldwide scale at the beginning of the second half of 20th century. They both individually exploited the most natural way of processing glass: direct cooperation with glassmakers when improvising at the glassworks; and so forming one of the most significant lines of modern-day glass art.
Miluše Roubíčková first chose an innovative approach to shaping glass and to various techniques of utility and decorative glass production in cooperation with glassworks. However, for more than fifty years she has been designing what brought her fame - her unique poetic objects shaped from hot glass. Her unconventional, intimate but at the same time witty “pop-art” cakes, Czech semolina cakes, bags of candy or flour, cabbage heads, vases with flowers, or plates with cookies, later human heads, dwarves, more serious fragments of concrete walls and glass elements, or wildly colorful balls of wool have no such original and comparable parallel in modern glass artwork.
René Roubíček together with Stanislav Libenský, Josef Hospodka and other peers started to realize their own glass art conception in Kamenický Šenov and Nový Bor in North Bohemia after the WW II. With his later voluminous objects he significantly influenced the image of the breaking Czechoslovakian exposition at EXPO in Brussels in 1958, furthermore EXPO 1967 in Montreal, EXPO 1970 in Osaka and many other international exhibitions. The development of his liberally or monumentally felt glass went from various containers to columns and objects loosely inspired by nature – from dynamic compositions of slender rays on metal constructions, hand-blown human heads or music instruments to the “Picture Gallery” cycle where he plays with glass fragments glued to sheets of glass. Recently he has received a lot of attention for his artwork EXPO² created for Preciosa, or his designs for Moser glassworks.
Miluše Roubíčková and René Roubíček had organized tens of exhibitions and their artworks are in prestigious public and private art collections all over the world. They have taken part in most years of the International Glass Symposium IGS Nový Bor. The live and work in Prague, Kamenický Šenov and Nový Bor. They had cooperated with glassworks in Nový Bor area, recently with glassworks Ajeto, Pačinek and Preciosa Lighting. It will be so this year at the IGS as well.
She studied at School of Decorative Arts and School of Applied Arts (1943-1944, prof. Jaroslav Holeček) and at Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design in Prague (1945-1949, prof. Josef Kaplický). Besides her individual art work, she has cooperated as a designer with company J. & L. Lobmeyr in Kamenický Šenov, Ústav bytové a oděvní kultury (ÚBOK) (Institution of Housing and Clothing Culture), national enterprise Umělecké sklo (Art Glass) and Borské sklo (Bor Glass) in Nový Bor etc.
He studied at School of Applied Arts in Prague (1940-1944, prof. Jaroslav Holeček) and at Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design in Prague (1949-1950, prof. Josef Kaplický). In 1945-1952 he taught at School of Glassmaking in Kamenický Šenov, in years 1953-1955 he was a designer at studios of national enterprise Umělecké sklo (Art Glass) and 1955-1965 the main artist of national enterprise Borské sklo (Bor Glass) in Nový Bor (now Crystalex). Later he taught at the Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design in Prague. Since he left, he has focused on his individual art work. In 2007 he entered the Czech Grand Design Hall of Fame of the Design Academy of the Czech Republic.
Text: Milan Hlaveš, UPM