Sag mir wo die Blumen sind
The central element of Miroslav Hašek’s installation is a period postcard. This intimate social artefact might be only a starting point for other layers of narration and interpretation. It is truly a historical interpretation, concerning also concrete historical moments, seen from a different point of view that makes all the facts and details, that were backgrounded back then, visible.
Miroslav Hašek’s artefact confronts the colour print postcard with a motif of a bouquet of a spray of cornflowers and oak spray tied by German tricolour with an identical “preserved” bouquet. We may thus compare the idealized, romanticizing and ideologically adequate motif on the postcard with the remnants of the real bouquet comprising dried torsos of products of nature and an arranged ribbon. The bouquet is dry, put under a glass cover and thus reminds us of a relic, a holy memory of something important, substantial, of historical significance. This is in a sharp contrast with the intimacy of the postcard that allows us to see both sides, not only the picture but also space for personal message. The message, a greeting perhaps, is, however, illegible as time moved on and thus leaves room for assumed stories. Today, we can only see the remains of a curly handwriting and a part of the postmark, the rest vanished as time moved on.
A literal transcription of the metaphor, a symbol, a set custom or a stereotype is typical for the work of Miroslav Hašek. He also draws from the history of his own family or local history (the area of Sudetenland in North Bohemia) in a similarly natural way, with rapt attention. Another prominent feature of his work is a sensitive approach to the materials he uses to build his works; these are often varying (glass, porcelain, textile, photograph or video installation). The author plays with the overlaps in meaning (the title of the work refers to the song with a significant anti-war subtext, interpreted by the famous German superstar Marlene Dietrich Sag mir wo die Blumen sind [Where have all the flowers gone]), the trends of that time (The Czech-German relations and mutuality) or strategies of contemporary art that make use of archival materials or work with other areas (floriculture, design).
Mgr. Eva Mráziková
KDTU FUD UJEP