The Stamp Gallery of Czech and Slovak Graphic Art




Proroci vysli z pousti


born on November 6, 1872 in Chýnov
died on October 13, 1941 in Chýnov


PROROCI VYŠLI Z POUŠTI (Prophets came out of the desert)

Stamp issue of the Czech Republic
date of issue: November 12, 1997
engraved by Miloš Ondráček


Original picture:
Book illustration to Otto Březina's "Prose Pieces"
from the year 1918

Bílek's book illustration depicted on the stamp is a typical example of his characteristic kind of expression in connecting figures of different sizes in one composition.

František Bílek was one of the foremost representatives of the Czech symbolism. Already in 1972 to his 100th birthday, the postage authorities of Czechoslovakia honored him by issuing a commemorative stamp. He was born on November 6, 1872 in Chýnov, where he also died on October 13, 1941. His versatile talent made itself felt not only as a sculptor but also in the fields of painting, ceramics, architecture and, above all, in his extensive graphic work. Influenced by the Art Nouveau Style and an inclination towards religious mysticism, he went beyond the conventions of the time in ecclesiastical art. By studying the work of medieval gothic masters, Bílek developped a characteristic kind of expression in connecting figures of different sizes in one composition - as shown by the book illustration on the previous page.

If you come to Prague someday, you definitely should visit "Bílek's Villa", a building which was completely designed and fit out by František Bílek in the Art Nouveau Style. After his death, the house was donated to the city of Prague by Bílek's widow in 1963. Today it is part of the Prague City Gallery in the Mickiewicz Street. In Bílek's studio there is a continuing exhibition with many of the artist's works.