- Czech Republic
- Helen Armitage
As the Czech Republic’s bustling capital city, Prague is the country’s main destination for foodies, history buffs, and art aficionados. We’ve compiled a list of the city’s very best contemporary art galleries, from the cutting-edge DOX Centre of Contemporary Art in Holešovice, to David Černy’s MeetFactory.
Located in a beautiful historic building in the heart of the city, Museum Montanelli is one of the Czech Republic’s few private museums. Operated by the DrAK Foundation—founded by Czech entrepreneur and art collector Dr. Dadja Attenburg Kohl—Museum Montanelli opened its doors in 2009. Since its establishment, it has garnered an impressive reputation as one of Prague’s premier destinations for contemporary art. Mainly exhibiting the work of emerging artists who are lesser known in the Czech Republic, the museum’s inaugural exhibition featured works by 21 international female artists, including German installation artist and film director Rebecca Horn and the great American surrealist painter and sculptor Dorothea Tanning.
Nerudova 13, Prague, Czech Republic, +420 257 531 220
Galerie Jiří Ŝvestka
Since 1995, Galerie Jiří Ŝvestka has been one of the Czech Republic’s foremost private contemporary art galleries. With an emphasis on the promotion of modern and contemporary artists from the Czech Republic and overseas, the gallery is still instrumental in presenting up-and-coming Czech artists to the international scene and is a regular attendant at international art fairs including the VOLTA fairs in Basel and New York. Since 2003 Galerie Jiří Ŝvestka has been based in a converted factory in Prague’s Old Town, and in 2009 the space opened a sister gallery in Berlin. The gallery represents a number of talented young artists such as Jan Vytiska, one of the most significant emerging Czech artists, and the Romanian conceptual artist Ioana Nemes.
Biskupský dvů 6, Prague, Czech Republic, +420 222 311 092
FUTURA Center for Contemporary Art
A private non-profit arts institution, the FUTURA Center for Contemporary Art is a three-floor gallery space located in Prague’s Smíchov quarter on the west bank of the Vltava River. Since its establishment in 2003, the gallery has presented numerous group and solo exhibitions featuring works by local and international artists, such as New York City-based conceptual artist Lawrence Weiner and Romanian multimedia artist Mircea Contor. FUTURA also operates an artist-in-residence program in Prague and in Brooklyn, New York.
Holeĉkova 49, Prague, Czech Republic, +420 604 738 390
DOX Center for Contemporary Art
Located on a bend of the Vltava River in the charming neighborhood of Holešovice, DOX Center for Contemporary Art was established in 2008 to put Prague on the map as a contemporary art center, and to provide a space for ‘alternative’ works of art. DOX has since become a popular destination for art lovers, presenting over 100 exhibitions so far, and ranking amongst the Czech Republic’s most forward-thinking art galleries. The space focuses on the unconventional and the thought-provoking, often addressing contemporary social issues. DOX also presents a series of guided tours, lectures, panel discussions, performances, and educational programs.
Poupětova 1, Prague, Czech Republic, +420 295 568 111
Leica Gallery Prague
Located in the heart of Prague’s bustling New Town, Leica Gallery Prague was established in 2002 and continues to exhibit a vast selection of photographic works. Presenting six to seven exhibitions a year, the gallery strives to increase awareness of contemporary photography and is a regular participant in the Czech and Slovakian art fair Prague Photo, while actively promoting local photography overseas. The gallery premises include an exhibition hall, café, and bookshop selling photography publications. Leica has exhibited the work of renowned artists such as Helmut Newton and documentary photographer and photojournalist, Sebastião Salgado.
Leica Gallery Prague, Ŝkolská 28, Prague, Czech Republic, +420 222 211 567
Dvorak Sec Contemporary
Named after directors Olga Dvorak and Petr Sec, Dvorak Sec Contemporary comprises 800m² of stylish exhibition space across two floors, designed by local design firm, Konsepti. Established in 2005, the gallery focuses on emerging artists from the Czech Republic, Britain, the USA, and Germany. Dvorac Sec gave American artist Paul Brainard his first solo exhibition in the country, and has exhibited the work of Jakub Matuska, who blends elements of street art with surrealism. In addition to the central gallery space, Dvorak Sec Contemporary also operates the private Gallery Art Factory, which works to develop the Czech art market.
Dvorak Sec Contemporary, Dlouhá 5, Prague, Czech Republic, +420 607 262 617
Founded in 2001 by the internationally-renowned Czech sculptor David Černý, MeetFactory is a not-for-profit contemporary art center with an international outlook. The space’s main mission is to encourage a dialogue between genres, simultaneously making contemporary art more accessible to the public. Based in a former 1920s glassworks factory, MeetFactory is comprised of three spaces—the MeetFactory Gallery, which presents original curated exhibitions, Kostka Gallery, which focuses on solo shows by new and established artists, and the Wall Gallery for large-scale street art. MeetFactory also runs an international artist-in-residence program—the biggest of its kind in the Czech Republic, hosting over 30 artists each year.
Ke Sklárně 3213/15, Prague, Czech Republic, +420 251 551 796
Hunt Kastner Gallery
Located in the fashionable neighborhood of Žižkov, Hunt Kastner Gallery is operated by two members of Prague’s expat community: Canadian Camille Hunt and American Katherine Kastner. Focusing primarily on young and progressive artists, the gallery represents members of both the local and international community. Hunt Kastner is also instrumental in promoting local art abroad through private collectors from overseas, and regularly takes part in international art fairs like Frieze London and LISTE.
Bořivojova 85, Prague, Czech Republic, +420 603 525 294
Galerie 35M2 is named after its size; entered through a picturesque courtyard in Žižkov, this petite space is split into two small rooms measuring just 35m², but nevertheless presents a comprehensive program of 11 exhibitions each year. The gallery is operated by curators Michala Pěchoučka and Petry Steinrové, whose mission is to work with young artists and recent art school graduates with an emphasis on painting, photography, installation, and conceptual art.
Vita Nejedlého 23, Prague, Czech Republic, +420 777 589 954
The Chemistry Gallery
The Chemistry Gallery is a forward-thinking space dedicated to the commercial presentation of artworks by young, talented artists form the Czech Republic and overseas. The gallery’s primary goal is to showcase a variety of genres and mediums, inspiring public interest in emerging art trends, and encouraging interactions between artists and the public. In 2009, the Chemistry Gallery was awarded the Art Prague Young Award at the city’s eighth annual contemporary art fair Art Prague.
Bubenská 1, Prague, Czech Republic, +420 606 649 170