PRESS RELEASE on the opening of the exhibition
The Rožmberks: A Czech Dynasty and Its Journey through History
Prague, 18 May 2011
Waldstein Riding Hall in Prague: 19 May – 20 August 2011
The exhibition is organized by: National Heritage Institute
Co-organizers are: Prague National Gallery and Senate of the Parliament of the CR
Head Exhibition Commissioner: Petr Pavelec
Committee members: Eliška Fučíková, Roman Lavička
Architectural Design: Jan Roháč, Bronislav Stratil
The patrons of the exhibition are:
Milan Štěch - President of the Senate of the CR, Karel Schwarzenberg – First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the CR, Jiří Besser – Minister of Culture of the CR, Jiří Zimola – Governor of the South Bohemian Region, Jiří Drahoš – President of the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic
Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Alš South Bohemian Gallery in Hluboká nad Vltavou, Archaeological Institute of the ASCR, České Budějovice Episcopacy, Cistercian Abbey of Vyšší Brod, Hungarian National Gallery, Museum of South Bohemia in České Budějovice, Research Library in České Budějovice, South Bohemian Region, Office of the President of the Czech Republic, Royal Premonstratensian Canon at Strahov, Lobkowicz Collections, Prachatice, Sedlčany, City Museum Týn nad Vltavou, Ministry of Culture, Museum of the Capital of Prague, Museum of Glass and Jewellery in Jablonec nad Nisou, Czech National Library, National Museum, National Technical Museum, Oberösterreichische Landesmuseen - Schlossmuseum Linz, Prachatice Museum, Regional Museum in Český Krumlov, Knights of the Cross with the Red Star, Prague Castle Administration, Silesian Museum in Opava, State Regional Archive in Třeboň and its departments, Decorative Arts Museum in Prague and private collectors.
We would like to thank the following companies:
Lesy České republiky, s.p., VIDOX, s.r.o., Budějovický Budvar, n. p.
On 6 November 1611, Peter Wok – the last male descendent of the famous dynasty of The Rožmberks – died at the castle of Třeboň and in 2011 we will commemorate the 400th anniversary of this event which significantly influenced the course of Czech history. The exhibition The Rožmberks: A Czech Dynasty and Its Journey through History presents important moments in the history of this dynasty and for the first time ever a representative collection of approximately 550 works of art and historical documents commemorating the Rosenberg cultural heritage will be gathered in one place. The exhibits have been borrowed from almost 70 partners, state institutions, churches and private collectors.
From the mid-13th century, The Rožmberks held the most important positions in the courts of the Czech kings almost in every generation and they significantly affected domestic political and international events. The seat of the dynasty was initially the Rosenberg Castle in South Bohemia and Český Krumlov then became the residence of The Rožmberks in 1302. The Rožmberks gradually conquered a substantial part of the territory of South Bohemia. On their estate they built towns and representation residencies, initiated the constructions of excellent religious and secular buildings and institutions and took care of the flourishing of the economy. The magnificent palace of the last Rosenbergs at the Prague Castle was the first Renaissance building of its type in Bohemia. The Rosenberg cultural heritage as a whole represents an important and essential part of the identity and historical memories of the Czech lands.
At the exhibition the visitors can see major works of art, daily used objects, coins, books, musical instruments, weapons, scientific tools, written archival documents, archaeological monuments and a number of other artefacts related to The Rožmberks and their times. The exhibition will take visitors to the time period ranging from the Middle Ages to the Early Modern Era.
The most valuable works of art in the exhibition include world renowned works of the Master of the Třeboň Altarpiece who is described as one of the major artistic figures of European Gothic painting. Two paintings from the times around the year 1380 – Hluboká Adoration of the Lord and Resurrection of Christ – will be exhibited. They are linked to the Třeboň Augustian Monastery established in 1367 by brothers Jost, Peter, Johann and Ulrich von Rosenberg.
The exhibition will also feature the previously never exhibited illuminated manuscript of the hymn Rosa Rosensis (Rosenberg Rose) by Jakub Canter from 1497. He dedicated the poem to the then Rosenberg ruler Peter IV. von Rosenberg and placed its plot into the mythical Greece where he tells a story about unfulfilled love in a humorous and erotic tone. The goddess Venus plays an important role here as the poet unfolds the divine origin of the Rosenberg coat of arms – a red rose – from her. In its time, this poetic fiction strengthened the prestige of the first aristocratic family in the Czech lands.
A number of portraits of The Rožmberks will be exhibited, the most surprising of which are probably previously entirely unknown paintings of Peter Wok von Rosenberg from the early 17th century depicting the Order of the Skull the appearance of which was previously only known from written sources. Equally interesting is the previously never exhibited and in artistic terms particularly high-quality posthumous portrait of Wilhelm von Rosenberg.
For the first time ever the public will get the chance to see the illustrated Lobkowitz inventory which includes beautiful and extremely valuable documentary paintings depicting representative and daily used items (places, bowls, cups etc.) from the property of the last wife of Wilhelm von Rosenberg Polyxena von Pernstein. A significant part of them – as we are reminded by the Rosenberg heraldic symbols - was originally part of Rosenberg treasury and art chamber.
The exhibition will also include three large canvasses from the Telč Chateau depicting the legend of the division of roses. In these paintings, Witigo von Prčice – the grandfather of all branches of the Wittigons – assigns individual manors to his sons. Shortly before the exhibition, the canvasses underwent restoration and laboratory, art and historical research which brought entirely new and essential findings. It is now absolutely certain that the canvasses were created already in the 16th century, probably shortly after the middle of the century.
The exhibition will also feature the first printout of the first Czech “constitution“ – so-called Vladislavské zřízení zemské (Vladislaus Constitution) from 1500 which in its introductory parts sets out the priority position of The Rožmberks ahead of all Czech lords.
Also on display, there will be letters of the unhappily married Perchta von Rosenberg with whom the legend of the White Lady is associated. There will also be the popular drinking fine register of Peter Wok von Rosenberg thanks to which Peter Wok gained his reputation of a bon vivant. The book is full of original records and drawings of Peter Wok’s guests at exuberant parties at the Bechyně Chateau. However, similar festivities were also usual in the courts of other young noblemen.
The exhibitions will also present Madonna from the Vimperk Parish Church which is one of the top works of the beautiful style from the territory which was held by The Rožmberks for a certain time period. This masterfully carved statue is based on the work of the Master of the Madonna of Krumlov and its artistic value is close to the Madonnas of Krumlov and Třeboň.
In a versed historical chronicle from the 1270s, there is a relatively detailed description of the founder of the Rosenberg Dynasty, Wok I. von Rosenberg, as a brilliant knight at the head of a large army unit. It was this exact record that inspired the creation of the life-size model of a Rosenberg rider on a horse which will welcome the visitors to the exhibition in the entrance hall of the Waldstein Riding Hall.
In the times of the last Rosenbergs, the theme of a rider appears not only on seals but also, more frequently on other works of art or dynasty representation items, often together with the dynasty crest in the traditional or Rosenberg-Orsini form. It is also often frequented in mintage, medal production or book binding and even in the form of wall paintings or stucco reliefs on facades of representative buildings, on facades of town buildings and vaults of ceremonial palace interiors. One of Renaissance-style examples of a depicted Rosenberg rider can be found on the stucco relief of the Golden Hall arch at the Kratochvíle Chateau. This scene is used as the official symbol of the entire exhibition.
The exhibits will be continuously exchanged, therefore, it will be possible to visit the exhibition repeatedly. It is the first time in the history when the Rosenberg heritage will be presented at one place in such an extent and diversity. It is very probable that such an exhibition will not be repeated in our generation, therefore, it should not be missed by any history lover or a South Bohemia patriot.
Compared to the original plan (20 May), the exhibition will open to public on 19 May and will run until 20 August 2011.
A publication called The Rožmberks was published for the exhibition. This brief guide to the exhibition can be bought by visitors in the Waldstein Riding Hall shop for CZK 230,- and the English version for CZK 290,-.
The exhibition catalogue, the scientific sponsor of which is the Vice-President of the Academy of Sciences of the CR Professor Jaroslav Pánek, will be available in July.
There will also be a rich accompanying programme within the exhibition including guided tours, lectures and special educational programmes for schools and parents with children. More information about the accompanying programmes can be found in the press release attachment.
Daily (including Mondays) 10am – 8pm.
The Rožmberks exhibition will not be part of the Prague Museum Night on 11 June. It is however possible to visit accompanying programmes in the St. Agnes Convent within this event.
Full: CZK 150
Reduced (disabled persons, students under 26 and seniors over 65): CZK 80
Family admission (i.e. two adults + up to 4 children under 18): CZK 350
Children under 6 years of age: free admission
Tickets can be bought at the Waldstein Riding Hall ticket office.
TREASURES OF THE LOBKOWITZ COLLECTIONS
Special offer for visitors of The Rožmberks exhibition
Visitors of The Rožmberks: A Czech Aristocratic Dynasty and Its Journey through History have the opportunity to use reduced admission to the permanent exhibition Treasures of the Lobkowitz Collections located in the Lobkowitz Palace at the Prague Castle. Even here visitors can find a number of items directly associated with the Rosenberg dynasty. Upon presentation of a ticket from the Rosenberg Exhibition each visitor will receive a 50% discount on the admission to the Treasures of the Lobkowitz Collections exhibition (regular price: full admission CZK 275, seniors/students CZK 200; after the discount: CZK 135 and CZK 100).
More information on the following websites: www.rozmberskyrok.cz, www.npu.cz, www.ngprague.cz, www.senat.cz
Národní památkový ústav ÚOP (National Heritage Institute) České Budějovice , Kateřina Voleská, Public Relations, Náměstí Přemysla Otakara II. 34, 370 21 České Budějovice, Tel:602626736, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Národní památkový ústav, ústřední pracoviště (National Heritage Institute - Headquarters), Zdeňka Kalová, Media Relations, Valdštejnské nám. 3, Prague, 257 010 207, Tel: 724 511 225, email@example.com
Národní galerie v Praze (Prague National Gallery), Eva Kolerusová, Spokesperson, firstname.lastname@example.org