Frantisek Drtikol


Publication 2012

Edited by Annette and Rudolf Kicken
Published by Hatje Cantz Verlag, Ostfildern 2012
Essays by Vladimír Birgus, Anna Fárová, and Matthew S. Witkovsky
104 pages with 128 illustrations
ISBN 978-3-7757-2600-9


František Drtikol (1883–1961) is considered to be the first Czech photographer enjoying international fame. Anna Fárová’s legendary exhibit in Prague in 1972 led to the rediscovery of his briefly forgotten work. This elaborate, illustrated volume is devoted to the nude portraits, one of the focal points in Dritkol’s oeuvre. Art Nouveau and Symbolism were strong influences on his early photographs, in which his nudes are presented as dreamy nymphs or femme fatales. After the end of World War I, he developed his own fascinating photographic style, characterized by geometric elements, expressive, dynamic poses, and dramatic lighting. An “Art Deco photographer,” as Fárová called him, Drtikol was inspired by Futurism, Expressionism, and Cubism to discover his own lyrical, formal vocabulary.