Vojtech Preissig (1873-1944)

Representation in collections: in Bohemia we can find the work of Vojtěch Preissig in the collections of Aleš's South Bohemian Gallery in Hluboká nad Vltavou, in the National Gallery in Prague, the Monument of National Literature in Prague and the Monument of National Liberation in Prague. New York City at The New York Public Library and at the Bochum Museum, Bochum, Germany.

Selection of individual exhibitions:

1907 - Vojtěch Preissig: Exhibition of graphic works and drawings, Topičův Slaon, Prague

1933 - Overview of the work of Vojtěch Preissig, Topičův Slaon, Prague

1963 - Vojtěch Preissig: Selection from his graphic work, Hollar Gallery, Prague

1968 - Vojtěch Preissig, Václav Špála Gallery

1989 - Vojtěch Preissig, U Jonáše House, Pardubice

2001 - Vojtěch Preissig: Graphics, Gallery of Modern Art in Hradec Králové

2004 - Vojtěch Preissig, Prague Castle Riding School, Prague

2008 - Vojtěch Preissig (1873-1944): Free and Applied Graphics, Vlašský dvůr, Kutná Hora

Vojtěch Preissig was born on July 31, 1873 in Světec u Bíliny in the family of mining specialist Eduard Preissig. He grew up in northern Bohemia until 1884, when Preissig's family moved to Prague. Until 1892 he studied at the Real Grammar School in Ječná Street, then he continued his studies at the School of Applied Arts. After completing the teacher drawing program, he graduated from Professor Ohmenn's special school. In 1898 he went to Paris, where he first worked in the studio of Alfons Mucha, later he participated in the study of graphics in the studios of copper engraving and etching by Emil Delaun and wood engraving by August Schmid. In Paris, he devoted himself to graphics, photography, illustrations and cartoons. He has worked for the magazines L´Art decoratif and L´Assiette au Beurre. In July 1903 he returned to Prague. Here he worked as a designer at the Czech Font Foundry. In 1904, he opened a graphic studio in Chodská Street, where he published Czech graphics. In 1906, he prepared a set of etchings called Colored Etchings for the United States. In 1907, Preissig's work was exhibited in Topič's salon in Prague and in the Mietka Gallery in Vienna. In March 1910 he moved to the United States. From 1912 he taught at the Art Students League in New York, and from 1914 at Teachers College of Columbia University. In 1916 he became director of the School of Printing and Graphic Arts at the Wentworth Institute in Boston. During World War I, he participated in the Czechoslovak foreign resistance. In 1920 he visited Europe. In the years 1923-1925, he prepared and managed the casting of typographic fonts according to his own designs. In 1926, he left the Wentworth Institute and settled on Long Island, New York. In 1931 he returned to Czechoslovakia. In 1933 Topič organized a Preissig retrospective and the Preissig Museum was opened in Světec near Bílina. In 1935 he was awarded the prize of the Czech Academy of Sciences. Already before 1938, he warned of developments in Germany. After the occupation of the Czech lands, he entered an active fight against the occupiers. He was arrested in September 1940 and died on June 11, 1944 in the Dachau concentration camp after an investigation in Pankrác and imprisonment in Gollnov and Dresden.