Mattoni by Dopitová – To All Points of the Compas

The new sculpture by Milena Dopitová, entitled Mattoni by Dopitová – To All Points of the Compass, situated by the exit to Václav Havel Airport in Prague, will temporarily occupy the empty space left after the sculpture Takeoff II by Valerian Karoušek and Jiří Novák, which is now under restoration by Prague City Gallery. The expert restoration of the work will be financially supported by the company Karlovarské minerální vody, a.s. (KMV, Karlovy Vary Mineral Waters), which also provided the funds or the current realisation.

The eight-meter tall sculpture Takeoff II, which was proclaimed a cultural heritage, has formed an inseparable part of the exit leading to Václav Havel Airport in Prague since 1972. It is a joint work of sculptors Valerian Karoušek and Jiří Novák, but its completion fell upon the latter artist after Karoušek’s tragic death in 1970 during the expedition to the Peruvian mountain Huascarán.

After 41 years, Karoušek’s object had to be dismantled and transferred to the Prague City Gallery’s depository due to its critical condition. It is now under restoration, financially supported by the KMV, so that it can return to its original setting. “The repair of the sculpture was, on the basis of a tender, entrusted to the leading Czech restorer Andrej Šumbera, who will restore its facing in the original material and via original technologies. Simultaneously, a new solution was designed to facilitate water drainage from the inside of the sculpture,” says Magdalena Juříková, Prague City Gallery director. The restored work should be delivered to Prague City Gallery by late 2016.

Moreover, the cooperation between Prague City Gallery and KMV resulted in the idea of commissioning a work of art, which would replace the Takeoff II in the meantime. Alessandro Pasquale, the company’s CEO, commented: “We support Czech culture, art and Czech artists on a long-term basis. Along with Prague City Gallery, we addressed three artists and asked them to submit their designs. A committee composed of the Prague City Gallery and Karlovarské minerální vody representatives then selected the design by Milena Dopitová.”

Milena Dopitová herself describes the ideological grounds of the work as follows: “The Mattoni mineral water ranks to the most famous brands produced in the Czech Republic. The grandiose symbol of an eagle has been stretching its wings on the Mattoni bottles for more than 140 years. My object To All Points of the Compass reflects both the existence and the success of this mineral water not only in the past and present, but also anticipates the prolongation of this this tradition in the future.”

“The set of three parts of the object refers to a thermal spring or the architecture of, for example, a chapel or a gate. The overall composition develops and accentuates the multi-faceted views on the object. The heads of eagles dominantly characterize strength, courage and certitude in achieving future goals,” Dopitová adds.

The KMV brand Mattoni is a traditional partner of artists and artistic events. It was, among other, the general partner of modern-art exhibitions “Prague Biennale” and it organized the project “Mattoni Water Colours”, which presented works of both Czech and global fine arts. .

The sculpture Mattoni by Dopitová – To All Points of the Compass
The work consists of three intersecting silhouettes of an eagle, positioned on each other. The iron construction is of jäckles covered by external metal facing. Each of the individual parts is in a different shade of red. The object’s dimensions in the ground plan are 10 x 9 meters and its total height is 7.6 meters.

Milena Dopitová (*1963)
The artist has been involved in creating objects for almost twenty years, i.e. since her studies at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague, where she currently heads the studio Intermedia I, focusing on spatial art. She has participated in numerous exhibitions in the Czech lands and abroad. One of her most recent realizations was the object Donated to the City, which was part of the project “Sculptures in the Public Space of the City of Brno” and was subsequently presented at Dopitová’s solo exhibition in Municipal Library of Prague City Gallery.

Karlovarské minerální vody
Karlovarské minerální vody, a.s. is the biggest producer of mineral and spring water in Central Europe. Besides the traditional mineral water Mattoni, it currently bottles spring water Aquila and mineral water Magnesia. The company was founded in 1873 by a Karlovy Vary native, Heinrich Mattoni. It received its current form during the 1990s thanks to substantial investments of its new owners, the Italian family Pasquale. At present, it exports its products to more than 20 countries around the world and owns foreign brands of mineral waters in Austria, Hungary and Ukraine. The professional approach of KMV and its employees to the quality of products earned the company numerous prizes and awards. The company takes significant part in the cultural, sports as well as social life of the Czech Republic. It also supports projects relating to the protection of nature and the environment. KMV is the member of the national network Global Compact Czech Republic, associating companies and organizations involved in the United Nations Global Compact – the world’s largest initiative of social responsibility and sustainable enterprise under the auspices of the United Nations.