(jiří macek) Now, when we keep looking at the clock to see how much time remains until the beginning of the New Year, we would like to present you a clock that became a phenomenon in conjunction with the exhibition where we found it. It is a clock from the Domácí umění collection.
It ranks among the most authentic manifestation of DIY in the Czech Republic and constitutes a very specific category in the constantly growing Domácí umění collection. While many decorative objects were made by anonymous do-it-yourselfers on immediate impulses, instructions also existed to some objects (e.g. how to make bottle wrappers in the form of poodle dogs). However, clock making almost turned into a movement. These clocks were made primarily by men doing their military service in the Czechoslovak People’s Army as presents for their beloved ones. The delicate use of a scroll saw, combined with ornaments in plywood made by an electric solder, resulted in a wide range of decorative objects by which folk decoration developed the most during the 1970s and 1980s. Such clocks featured austere and easily accessible tin alarm clocks as hearts and plywood frames as the houses into which men who were deprived of their families for two years projected their dreams and desires. Making these clocks caused time to pass faster for the men, blurring reality and bringing their desired freedom ever closer. For this reason, many of those who would otherwise have never bothered with artistic production started making such clocks as well. Thus, the clock became their one and only attempt at a work of art. The clocks give evidence of our perspective and natural need for beauty.
Thanks to the curators of Domácí umění, we are able to present some of the most interesting specimens in an exclusive selection. Happy New Year!