Zdeněk Sýkora

Narodený(á) 3. únor 1920, Louny
Zomrel/a 12. červenec 2011, Louny
An important Czech painter and graphic artist whose structures and lines reflect a specific artistic concept of painted space. He dealt with the relationship between colour and space in paintings, objects, and specific three-dimensional concepts. Besides abstract works, he also dealt with the theme of landscape which represented a natural inspiration for his creative work.
(Olga Staníková)
graphics, painting, object, architecture, new media



He participated in the activities of an informal surrealist group in Louny, and photographed and experimented with the photocollage technique. He started to paint under the influence of surrealism and cubism in the late 1940's and in the open air (together with Vladislav Mirvald, his friend and former classmate).


Studied at Charles University in Prague (1945-1947)



Zdeněk Sýkora. Paintings (samostatná výstava, Prague)


There was a radical change in his artistic work after he saw Mattis's paintings in the Hermitage Museum, Gardens cycle
(paintings reduced in both shape and colour).


He moved from natural and organic forms to geometric and abstract forms; abstract forms were based on geometrical shapes, which he then organized into a grid.


Creative group in the Umělecká beseda (skupinová výstava, Prague)



In cooperation with Vladislav Mirvald, he implemented a fire-protection curtain in the Fučík Theatre in Louny (which was lost during the reconstruction of the theatre in 2001).


The first of his structure series was created – Grey Structure. He used combinatorial principles to organize the geometric elements in his structures.

Black Commas (painting)


He started to use a computer for the composition arrangements of his paintings in cooperation with mathematician Jaroslav Blažek. Thus, he was among the pioneers of this method.

Red structures (mixed media)
Umělecká beseda (1964) (skupinová výstava, Prague)
Křižovatka (skupinová výstava, Prague)


He attended foreign exhibitions, such as Nuove realtá nell'arte de Cecoslovacchia contemporanea, La Carabaga club d'arte, Genoa; Tschechoslovakische Kunst heute, Städtische Kunstgalerie, Bochum a Staatliche Kunsthalle, Baden-Baden; Nova Tendencija 3, Galerija suvremene umjetnosti, Zagreb.

Graphic print (mixed media)
Czechoslovak Art Today (skupinová výstava, Baden-Baden)
Nova tendencija 3 / New tendency 3 (skupinová výstava, Zagreb)


He was appointed a senior lecturer at Charles University in Prague.
Creative group Umělecká beseda (1966) (skupinová výstava, Prague)
Spring Exhibition 1966 (skupinová výstava, Prague)
Czechoslovak Contemporary Art (skupinová výstava, Berlin)


Great architectural implementations in Prague (structures): ceramic wall at the Polish information centre in Jindřišská Street (which is part of a coffee-house today) and glass mosaic of Air vents of the Letná Tunnel by the architect Josef Kales (cultural monument since 2003).
Constructive Tendences (skupinová výstava, Louny)
Constructive Tendencies from Czechoslovakia (skupinová výstava, Frankfurt)


He exhibited at the international exhibition of contemporary art Documenta 4, Kassel.
Výtvarníci Špálovej galérie (skupinová výstava, Bratislava)
Concretists´Club and Guests (skupinová výstava, Ústí nad Labem)
Documenta 4 (skupinová výstava, Kassel)
The New Sensitivity. Křižovatka and Guests (skupinová výstava, Prague)
Dodekaedr (skupinová výstava, Ústí nad Orlicí)


He participated in the first biennial of constructive art in Nuremberg – Konstruktive Kunst : Elemente + Prinzipien; attended the opening of the Tendencije 4 – Computers and Visual Research exhibition in Zagreb (with Josef Hlaváček).
In the late 1960's and early 1970's, his paintings and sculptures (structures) were seen in important European and American galleries, museums, and private collections, for example: McCrory Collection New York, collection of Jan and Meda Mládek Washington, Nationalgalerie Berlin, Städtische Kunstgalerie Bochum, Museum Folkwang Essen, Sammlung Etzold – Städtisches Museum Mönchengladbach, Museo de Arte Moderno Jesús Soto Ciudad Bolívar.
Zdeněk Sýkora. Computer-Strukturen (samostatná výstava, Hannover)
Recent Graphics from Prague (skupinová výstava, Los Angeles)


The first retrospective exhibition in the Špála Gallery in Prague (he did not exhibit in Czechoslovakia again until 1987).

Graphic print (mixed media)
Zdeněk Sýkora. Works from Years 1959–1970 (samostatná výstava, Prague)
Five Czech Graphic Artists (skupinová výstava, Groningen)


He exhibited at the second biennial of arts in Nuremberg, Was die Schönheit sei, das weiss ich nicht, Künstler-Theorie-Werk.


He created the first line painting by magnifying the structural elements. Instead of a strict order, he used the randomness of shape, length, colour, crossing, etc.


Within the Gorinchem ´74 symposium in the Netherlands, he made a pavement in the Netherlands (85 m²) which was renewed and moved in 2005.
Sympozium Gorinchem ´74 (verejný program, Gorinchem)


He completed the implementation of structures in architecture – a marble sidewalk and a wall of the shopping centre in Litvínov.


First exhibition of line works – Kunstcentrum Badhuis in Gorinchem, Netherlands.
Zdeněk Sýkora: Computer-schilderijen (samostatná výstava, Gorinchem)


One Line (graphics)

Quintet (graphics)

Trio Hiršal (graphics)


He married his former student Lenka (*16th June 1957 in Plzen) and started to cooperate with her in 1985.
He worked on a large painting Line No. 24 (3 x 3 m, 227 lines) which he later called The Last Judgement (property of Centre Pompidou in Paris today).
Zdeněk Sýkora (samostatná výstava, Chambéry)


He painted strong colourful lines in his paintings; he created the cycle of abstract paintings Stains which he continued to work on into the 1990's.



His first foreign retrospective exhibition Quadrat – Moderne Galerie, Josef Albers Museum, Bottrop.

Detail Nr. 21 (graphics)
Zdeněk Sýkora – Retrospective (samostatná výstava, Bottrop )


Line no. 43 (painting)
Zdeněk Sýkora – Graphics (samostatná výstava, Ústí nad Labem)


A large retrospective exhibition (works from 1947) in the The Brno House of Arts (in cooperation with the theorist Jiří Valoch).
Sýkora started to cooperate with Heinz Teufl which resulted in his solo exhibition in the same year (interrupted in 1968).

Line No. 56 (painting)
Zdeněk Sýkora (samostatná výstava, Brno)
Zdeněk Sýkora: Pictures of 1968 and 1980–1986 (samostatná výstava, Bad Münstereifel)


He created a large painting (3 x 6 m) which was exhibited at the Konkret 9 symposium in Nuremberg.
Czech Painting Today (skupinová výstava, Esslingen )


The first painting with lines which only ran from a few points (he continued until 1994).
He built a new studio in Louny. He created paintings with horizontal lines (until 1993), lines running from a single point, angled lines, and lines forming areas (1994). In addition to very complicated lines there were also paintings with only a few lines.
Artists Tribute to Jiří Chalupecký (skupinová výstava, Prague)


Zdeněk Sýkora: Paintings, Graphics (samostatná výstava, Prague)
Zdeněk Sýkora – Line (samostatná výstava, Prague)
Tradition and Avant-garde in Prague (skupinová výstava, Osnabrück)
Zdeněk Sýkora. New Works (samostatná výstava, Bad Münstereifel)
Zdeněk Sýkora: Line-Paintings (samostatná výstava, Amsterdam)
Grey Brick 78/1991 (skupinová výstava, Klatovy)


Zdeněk Sýkora: Line Paintings from the Years 1986–1990 (samostatná výstava, Mönchengladbach)
Czech and Slovak Contemporary Art 1950 - 1992 (skupinová výstava, Novara)
Minisalon (skupinová výstava, Prague)
Insights - Czech and Slovak Contemporary Art (skupinová výstava, Cologne)
Czech Fine Art 1960-1990 (skupinová výstava, Prague)


Implementation of a twelve metre Sýkoras Wand for Selmoni AG, Basel.
Until 1995, alongside the main activity, he also developed the possibilities of the paintings he had started in the late 1950's – landscapes, the Stains cycle, and he made paintings with lines running from a single dot (until 2004).


Line no. 115 (architecture)
Zwischen Zeit Raum I (skupinová výstava, Düsseldorf)
Zdeněk Sýkora (samostatná výstava, Litoměřice)


A retrospective exhibition in GHMP and Wilhelm-Hack-Museum, Ludwigshafen.
Zdeněk Sýkora: Retrospective 1945 – 1995 (samostatná výstava, Prague)
Zdeněk Sýkora: Retrospective (samostatná výstava, Ludwigshafen)
Karel Malich, Zdeněk Sýkora (skupinová výstava, Drážďany)


Line (mixed media)
Minisalon (skupinová výstava, Forth Myers)
Fineart ´96 (skupinová výstava, Prague)
Zdeněk Sýkora: Paintings and Objects 1963 – 1995 (samostatná výstava, Düsseldorf)


Three phases I. (mixed media)

Three phases II. (mixed media)

Three phases III. (mixed media)
Zdeněk Sýkora – Karel Malich (samostatná výstava, Dresden)


Line no. 150 (painting)

Line no. 156 (painting)
Zdeněk Sýkora: New Line-Paintings (samostatná výstava, Amsterdam)
Zdeněk Sklenář – Relations (samostatná výstava, Ústí nad Labem)


Illustrations of several books published by Aulos, Prague: Jan Neruda – Cosmic Songs (1999), Stephen Hawking and Roger Penrose – The Nature of Space and Time (2003), William Faulkner – Elly (2005), Karel Hynek Mácha – May (2007), Josef Hiršal and Bohumila Grögerová – Poetry of Structure and Line (2009); cooperation with Zdeněk Ziegler and Zdeněk Křenek – they were awarded the Most Beautiful Book of the Year award in the Bibliophilia category three times.


Zdeněk Sýkora (samostatná výstava, Louny)
Art in Central Europe 1949–1999 (skupinová výstava, Barcelona)
Actual Infinity (skupinová výstava, Prague)
90 Years of the Brno House of Arts (skupinová výstava, Brno)


His painting Line No. 137 of 1997 became the logo of the newly opened Museum of Modern Arts – mumok Stiftung Ludwig, Vienna.


Black and White (skupinová výstava, Svitavy)


Situation 11 (samostatná výstava, Berlin)
Look Light (skupinová výstava, Brno)
Sýkora 1998 / 2003 (samostatná výstava, Prague)


Paintings with lines which only pass through the format and have a better possibility of free movement.
From National Classics (skupinová výstava, Litomyšl)


Implementation of lines in architecture – entrance hall to the new building of Air Traffic Control of the Czech Republic, Jeneč u Prahy.
Received award from Herbert Boeckl Prize
Sýkora 2004 (samostatná výstava, Prague)
Zdeněk Sýkora: Recent Paintings (samostatná výstava, Amsterdam)
Zdeněk Sýkora (samostatná výstava, Louny)
Herbert-Boeckl-Preiss 2005 Zdeněk Sýkora (samostatná výstava, Salzburg)


Czech Art 20th Century /1940-1970 (skupinová výstava, Hluboká nad Vltavou)
World of the Czech Graphics (skupinová výstava, Bruntál)


Zdeněk Sýkora – Print Graphics (samostatná výstava, Curych)
Czech Contemporary Art - Parallel Lines (skupinová výstava, Moscow)


Received award from Cena Vladimíra Boudníka
Ladislav Daněk: 2x50 / Project - No Project (skupinová výstava, Olomouc)
Zdeněk Sýkora: Graphics (samostatná výstava, Olomouc)
Velké prádlo (skupinová výstava, Olomouc)
Zdeněk Sýkora: Prints (samostatná výstava, Klatovy)


Zdeněk Sýkora Letná XL (samostatná výstava, Prague)
Vladimír Boudník Prize 2008 (samostatná výstava, Prague)
Zdeněk Sýkora: Graphics (samostatná výstava, Louny)


A cycle of exhibitions on the anniversary of his birth – Zdeněk Sýkora 90 in the Gallery of the Capital City of Prague, Colour and Space in the Olomouc Museum of Arts and The Landscape in the Gallery of Arts in Karlovy Vary.
Selection (skupinová výstava, Prague)
Zdeněk Sýkora 90 (samostatná výstava, Prague)
Zdeněk Sýkora. Space and Color (samostatná výstava, Olomouc)
Zdeněk Sýkora: Landscape (samostatná výstava, Karlovy Vary)


Zdeněk Sýkora: Prints (samostatná výstava, Brussels)
Born in Louny. On the Way of Zdeněk Sýkora (samostatná výstava, Louny)
The Story of the Louny Theatre Curtain (samostatná výstava, Louny)
Zdeněk Sýkora: Zero Lines (samostatná výstava, Prague)
Kalendáře pro Jindru Štreita (skupinová výstava, Bruntál)
Doteky konstruktivismu (skupinová výstava, Prague)
Zdeněk Sýkora (samostatná výstava, Prague)
Zdeněk Sýkora. Landscape (samostatná výstava, Klatovy)
Zdenek Sykora from the Museum Collection (samostatná výstava, Nürnberg )
Uchronie aneb Příběhy ze sbírky (skupinová výstava, Prague)


Zdeněk Sýkora: Parallel Path (samostatná výstava, Ostrava)
Chance as Strategy (skupinová výstava, Budapest)


Zdeněk Sýkora in Select Society (samostatná výstava, Louny)




Muzeum umění Olomouc 2011-2016