Central Europe Review: politics, society and culture in Central and Eastern Europe
Vol 2, No 6
14 February 2000

Coming Up in the US E V E N T S:
Coming up in the USA

Karen M Laun

Upcoming Central and East European cultural events over the next few weeks include a US tour of the Bohemian Chamber Philharmonic and exhibits at the Ukrainian Museum in New York, as well as other Polish, Czech and Ukrainian exhibits and events.

In this week's Coming Up section we have:

Click on the appropiate heading or just scroll down to browse.

Baltic Art Exhibit

Traveling Baltic Art Exhibition
Beginning 25 January
The US-Baltic Foundation
733 15th Street, Suite 1026
Washington, DC 20005
Phone: (202) 393-3338
Fax: (202) 393-3388

An unprecedented exhibition of contemporary paintings and sculpture from the three Baltic nations will be touring five major US cities beginning in January. Starting in New York and Washington before continuing to Chicago, Houston and Dallas, The US-Baltic Foundation will present 67 works of art representing 43 contemporary painters and sculptors from Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.

The Baltic Art Exhibition will hold its world premiere with a gala benefit at New York's National Arts Club (15 Gramercy Park South) on 25 January, where it will be on display until 12 February. From New York, the exhibition will travel to Washington, DC, where the exhibition will be hosted in the IMF's gallery (700 19th Street, NW) March 9 through April 8. The exhibit was organized by Hamid Ladjevardi, a New York-based fund manager specializing in Baltic investments. Barbara Crane, an artist and curator of the Baltic Art Exhibition, chose a broad spectrum of paintings and sculptures, encompassing styles from representational to neo-expressionist to abstract. Be sure to visit this extraordinary exhibit when it comes to a city near you!

More information about this exhibit can be found on the website of the Latvian Embassy.

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Czech and Slovak Events


Bohemian Chamber Philharmonic US Tour

Attention classical music lovers! The Bohemian Chamber Philharmonic is touring the US from mid-February through early April. See below for dates and locations. For information on time and venue, call (212) 581-8478.

20 Naples, FL; 21 Titusville, FL; 22 Vero Beach, FL; Fort Myers, FL; 25 Daytona Beach, FL; 26 Brunswick, GA; 27 Niceville, FL; 28 Panama City, FL; 29 Americus, GA.

1 Columbia, SC; 2 Atlanta, GA; 5 Danville, VA; 6 Elon College, NC; 10 Wabash, IND; 16 Rock Island, IL; 18 Houghton, IL; 19 Green Bay, WI; 20 Rockford, IL; 26 Indianapolis, IN; 27 Tiffin, OH; 28 Detroit, MI; 29 Pittsburgh, PA; 30 Washington, PA; 31 Lancaster, PA.

1 Carlisle, PA; 2 Winchester, VA; 4 Williamsport, PA; 5 South Orange, NJ; 8 Merrick, NY.


Bohdan Holomíček Exhibit
20 January to 26 February
Leica Gallery
570 Broadway (SoHo)
New York, NY
Phone: (212) 777-3051

The Leica Gallery in SoHo is presenting an exhibit of photographs by Bohdan Holomíček, born in 1943 in Sienkiewiczowka, a Czech village in Ukraine, under German control at the time. He began taking photos as early as age six, documenting his family and the simple farming life in his community. It was not until 1994 that Holomíček took up photography full-time, still presenting everyday Czech life in an almost mystical, fairy-tale way, combined with tones of melancholy. This exhibit can be seen Tuesday through Friday, 11 am to 6 pm, and Saturday, noon to 6 pm.


Projekt Praha 2000
22 February to 30 August
Czech Embassy
3900 Spring of Freedom Street, NW
Washington, DC 20008
Phone: (202) 274-9100

Projekt Praha 2000, a unique exhibit by Washington-based photographer Chad Wyatt, presents portraits of remarkable personalities in the Czech Republic's art scene over the last decade. While many remarkable works of art have left their marks on history, we often have little information on the artists who created them. Wyatt's photographs map an entire generation active on the contemporary Czech art scene, creating a first-of-its-kind historical marker. The exhibit opening is at 7:30 pm at the Czech Embassy and features Karel Růžička on saxophone. It will be open through August, weekdays 9 am to 5 pm and during events.


The Sweet Century
Documentary film by Helena Třeštíková
16 February, 7 pm
Czech Center New York
1109 Madison Avenue
New York, NY 10028
Phone:(212) 288-0830

The Czech Center, under the auspices of Marcela Galušková, wife of H E Vladimír Galuška, ambassador, permanent representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, is presenting a special screening of The Sweet Century (1998), directed by acclaimed documentary filmmaker Helena Třeštíková. In this work, four female former political prisoners recall their terrible experiences. The recollections are interspersed with period footage of political and social life in Czechoslovakia beginning with the interwar period, followed by the WWII German occupation and then the Communist regime.

Helena Třeštíková studied directing at the Prague Film Academy. Since 1972, when she began her professional career, she has made some 30 documentaries focusing on relationships and social problems. Two of Třeštíková's major projects are: Studies of Marriage (1987), for which she followed seven couples through six years of marriage, and Tell Me Something About Yourself (started just before November 1989), tracking the lives of juvenile delinquents.

There will be a discussion with special guests following the screening.

Click here for a Kinoeye review.

Jiří Menzel Film Retrospective
September 1999 to February 2000
Phone: (505) 473-6494

The Czech Center New York has been presenting a traveling retrospective of Czech New Wave director Jiří Menzel's greatest films to audiences across the country since September 1999. So far, the Jiří Menzel Film Retrospective has made stops in Montreal, Cleveland, New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Portland and Santa Fe. Featuring Menzel's best films over the last thirty years, the retrospective gives film lovers a rare glimpse of the body of work of one of Europe's foremost filmmakers. In February, film-goers can catch such films as the famous Closely Watched Trains, My Sweet Little Village and Larks on a String, which was banned by the Communist authorities for 21 years.

For theater location and film schedule see below:

Cinematheque Ontario
Jackman Hall, Art Gallery of Ontario,
317 Dundas St West, Toronto
Advance ticket sales for members only at (416) 968-FILM
Admission: members USD 4.80, non-members USD 8

Friday, 18 February
Capricious Summer

Saturday, 19 February
Closely Watched Trains

Tuesday, 22 February
Larks on a String

Wednesday, 23 February
Cutting It Short

Thursday, 24 February
Festival of the Snowdrops

Friday, 25 February
My Sweet Little Village

Saturday, 26 February
The Life and Extraordinary Adventures of Private Ivan Chonkin

For more information about Jiří Menzel, Video Thursdays and other films presented by the Czech Center, visit their website.


Bohumil Hrabal Evening
17 February, 7:30 pm (postponed from January due to weather conditions)
Czech Embassy
3900 Spring of Freedom Street, NW
Washington, DC 20008
Phone: (202) 274-9100, x3413 (free, call for reservations)

In conjunction with the Jiří Menzel Film Retrospective, the Czech Embassy is sponsoring several special events about the director's favorite author, Bohumil Hrabal. Among the most important and popular Czech writers of the 20th century, Bohumil Hrabal has had nearly three million copies of his works printed in his native land and has also been translated into 27 foreign languages. More of Hrabal's novels and stories have been adapted for the screen than any other Czech authors, perhaps the most internationally renowned of them being Jiří Menzel's version of Closely Watched Trains, which received the 1967 Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film.

This evening, which celebrates the 85th anniversary of Hrabal's birth, features readings from the author's most well-known texts by members of Scena Theatre, as well as the opening of an exhibit devoted to his life and work. The evening is organized in collaboration with Politics and Prose Bookstore, which will offer Hrabal's books in English translation at the event.

Bohumil Hrabal Exhibit
25 January to 17 February
Czech Embassy
3900 Spring of Freedom Street, NW
Washington, DC 20008
Phone: (202) 274-9100

Following the special evening of readings from Bohumil Hrabal's work, a new exhibit "Too Loud a Solitude" will be on display at the Czech Embassy. This exhibit examines the life and work of this unusual Czech writer, from his birth on 28 March, 1914, through his sudden death on 3 February 1997. Open weekdays: 9 am to 5 pm.

...And More Czech and Slovak Culture in the US

For more information on Czech and Slovak events in the US, look here and click on "Czech-Slovak." Also, check out the calendar of events at the Czech Embassy.

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Polish Events


Arthur Szyk Exhibit of World War II Era Prints and Drawing
9 December 1999 to 6 May 2000
The Library of Congress
Swann Gallery of the Thomas Jefferson Building
101 Independence Ave, SE
Washington, DC 20540
Phone: (202) 707-8696

The Library of Congress is celebrating the recent acquisition of several important original works by Polish American artist and illustrator Arthur Szyk (1894-1951) with an exhibition in the Swann Gallery entitled "Arthur Szyk: Artist for Freedom." Szyk, who was born in Lodz, Poland, achieved international prominence during World War II when he produced hundreds of anti-Axis illustrations and cartoons in support of the Allied war effort. Three of his most important original works of graphic Americana - The Declaration of Independence, Four Freedoms Prayer and Bill of Rights - are featured in the exhibition. The exhibit is open free of charge from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, Monday through Saturday.

More information on this exhibition is available through the Library of Congress website, by e-mailing: swann@loc.gov, or by calling Sara Duke, Curatorial Project Assistant, at (202) 707-9115 or Curator Harry Katz at (202) 707-8696.

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Romanian Culture in the US

For information on Romanian events in the US, look up the calendar of events at the Romanian Embassy's website.

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Ukrainian Events

Folk Art

Exhibits at the Ukrainian Museum
The Ukrainian Museum
203 Second Avenue (between 12th and 13th Sts.)
New York, NY 10003
Phone: (212) 228-0110

If you're in the New York area, be sure to visit the Permanent Exhibition at the Ukrainian Museum. The newest addition is the Children's Exhibition. On display are traditional children's folk costumes - shirts, sheepskin jackets, footwear and headdresses - in various regional styles. The exhibition also features toys, among them clay whistles in the shape of rams from the Poltava Region and dolls in folk costumes from various regions of Ukraine.

An addition to the Permanent Folk Art exhibition is a collection of rushnyky (woven or embroidered ritual cloths) and wedding trees, which are made from actual tree branches, covered in dough and decorated with dough birds, ribbons and periwinkle.

The museum is open Wednesday through Sunday 1 pm to 5 pm.

For more information on exhibits and events at the Ukrainian Museum, contact them via e-mail or visit their website.


Olensky-Petryshyn Art Exhibit
Opening 11 February
Ukrainian Institute of America
2 E 79th Street
New York, NY 10021;
Phone: (212) 288-8660

For more information on this exhibit e-mail the Ukrainian Institute or visit their website.

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If you would like to list your upcoming Central or East European cultural event here, please e-mail us at usa@ce-review.org

Compiled by Karen M Laun



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