The Stamp Gallery of Czech and Slovak Graphic Art

Praga, Bohemia

born on July 13, 1607 in Prague
died on March 25, 1677 in London-Westminster

POHLED NA PRAHU (Look to Prague)

Stamp issue of Czechoslovakia
date of issue: November 27, 1981
engraved by Bedøich Housa

Original picture:
drawing, aquarel 12 x 27,9 cm
from the year 1636
Národní galerie (National Gallery) Prague

The picture was probably created during a stay in Regensburg (Germany) in August 1636 according a sketch Hollar made in July in Prague. This fine miniature with Hollar's special accuracy and a feeling for the magic of his native town was the original for a further color etching in 1649.

Václav (Wenceslaus) Hollar is the first great and most important graphic artist and engraver from Bohemia. His work still today is highly honored in the Czech lands. He was born on July 13, 1607 to Prague, where he also spent his youth. He moved to Germany in 1627, where he cooperated with Matthäus Merian in his studio in Frankfurt. In 1636 he joined the staff of Lord Thomas Arundel within a delegation of the English King at the Habsburg Court in Vienna. After a journey through Germany and Central Europe, he definitely moved with his mecenas to England where he lived - with short interruptions - till his death. There he cared about the Lord's rich collection of renaissance graphics.

In his graphic work, he primarily dealt with landscapes, sights of cities, maps and natural studies. He created a great number of graphics based on his own designs or work of other artists, where he showed a high precision of graphic techniques. He died on March 25, 1677 to London and left a rich work of about 400 drawings and 3000 etchings.

In 1917 the founding assembly of the association of Czech graphic artists took Hollar's name to show the continuity and tradition of the Bohemian and Czech graphic art. Therefore it is not astonishing that the stamp designers coming from the Hollar association often depicted Hollar on stamps (till today 11 stamps).