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Wenzel Hablik

The architect of invisible cities

August 4, 1881March 23, 1934

The architect of invisible cities

When he was 6, Wenzel Hablik stared deep into a crystal he’d discovered in his hometown of Brüx — inside the crystal he saw “magical castles and mountains” that would haunt the artwork, architecture, and design of this most polymath of Czech artists.

Raised in his fathers cabinetry shop, Wenzel became a carpenter by age 12 — the beginning of an unrelentingly creative life. After his apprenticeship Wenzel painted proclain, worked as a draftsman for an architect, and studied painting at the Vienna Kunstgewerbeschule and the Prague Academy of Arts. At age 25, Wenzel made a solo ascent of Mont Blanc, the highest mountain in the Alps. Ascending though the clouds toward the glittering peak was an experience that would shape his 1909 collection Creative Forces — a folio of twenty etchings detailing crystalline structures perched in the snowy heights of the Alps.

The heavenly crystalline would haunt Hablik’s work, appearing in paintings, drawings, and more subtly in his interior design work. In 1907 Hablik met Richard Biel — a timber merchant who would become his mentor and patron. Through Biel, Wenzel Hablik expanded his work dramatically, evolving from artist to designer — over the next ten years he would create textiles, furniture, jewelry, wallpaper, and combine these physical elements into refracted colorful interior spaces — rooms that feel like living inside the fragmented light of a crystal.

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Joys of Life

Joys of Life

1904-1907
Figure Ashore

Figure Ashore

1904-1907
Starry Sky, Attempt

Starry Sky, Attempt

1909
Waves - Creative Force

Waves - Creative Force

1909
Interior of a Display Temple

Interior of a Display Temple

1914
Design for an Exhibition Building

Design for an Exhibition Building

1919

Come and join the struggle against all things negative and corrupting.

Delight in Existence!

1920
Cathedral Interior

Cathedral Interior

1921
1 Mark Notgeld

1 Mark Notgeld

1921
20 Mark Notgeld

20 Mark Notgeld

1921
1 Mark Notgeld: Not Kennt

1 Mark Notgeld: Not Kennt

1921
Exhibition Space Wallpapers

Exhibition Space Wallpapers

1921
Utopian Buildings

Utopian Buildings

1922
Design for a Great Hall

Design for a Great Hall

1924
Cantilever Cupola with Five Hilltops

Cantilever Cupola with Five Hilltops

1924
1801
"A long struggle lies in store for me in this field of color"
Paul Klee
In the shadow of brighter colors
André Derain
Wenzel Hablik
A crooked girl find expression in color
María Blanchard
Cubism for the common man
Fernand Henri Léger
2000

The artists of Expressionism

The artists of Art Nouveau

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