HISTORY OF EMBANKMENT OF SCULPTORS (As it often happens, bold ideas are born during drinking of beer)

After the end of the first year of the renewed International Sculpture Symposium in Hořice (in 2002) samohrad-richtermoc Samohrd
), its organizers were worried that the area was still not ready for the new sculpture park. Negotiations on the variants of its location would never end. The stage of the existing Sculpture park of St. Gothard was already overcrowded, mainly in its logic it had a fundamental bond to the already closed stages of Hořice Sculpture Symposium. Therefore, when the organizers of the academic symposium, sculptor Roman Rychtermoc and Ing. Martin Samohrd were sitting together in a pub and were drinking beer, they dealt with an idea, where the newly created sculptures should be temporarily placed. Here for the first time it was boldly pronounced: "Take them for some time into another town. Maybe it also helps to increase the promotion and the prestige of the Symposium." There were many different suggestions: Hradec Králové, Ústí nad Labem, Poděbrady, Jičín and some other So mostly the places where the both men had good contacts with the town halls. During the last beer it was agreed: Hradec Králové!

This reasoning, allowing the expansion of the presentation of the works created in Hořice Sculpture Symposiums, was in 2003 overtaken by a founding member of HSS, Alexandr Gregar alexandr-gregar Alexandr
, M.A., in that time the head of the Department of Culture at the City Hall of Hradec Králové. He offered his concept of cycles "Hradec Králové embankments", presenting the cultural life in public space to the citizens. It was an amazing offer! It also enabled a strong and decisive participation of Hradec Králové in the financing of the sculptural symposia. The first of all the subsequent "Hradec Králové embankments" - EMBANKMENT OF SCULPTORS, based an exceptional tradition of an annually varied exhibition of sculptures on Náměstí Svobody and Tylovo nábřeží. Do you really know some other city in the world where the exhibition of monumental sculptures in the public space would be annually changed during more than 10 years? It is only a pity that many other later introduced "Hradec Králové embankments" under the leadership of new captains of Hradec Králové culture degenerated into a fallen fairground attraction, or markets with inferior goods. Gregar's unusual concept of a direct contact of Hradec Králové citizens with quality culture, tied to a defined valuable urban space, was unfortunately not fully used.

An urbanistic note:
Thanks to the Embankments of Scultors, in 2003 Náměstí Svobody square and Tylovo nábřeží embankment became urban public spaces, used not only to confront the present with the past, but also to obtain a historical distance, which helps citizens to understand not only the general concept of the city as a cultural document, but also to create an emotional view to an annually varied picture of the contemporary world "symposional" art of sculpture.

Apart from the linear arrangement of the statues on Tylovo nábřeží embankment, four grass segments defining "a communication trident" of Náměstí Svobody square, with more mass installations mined up to the dominant axis of Gočár avenue. were used as a central exhibition space. This spatial composition worked well, and it was therefore repeated in the coming years of the Embankment of Sculptors. The statues in the square, creating a dynamic first plan under the veduta of the historical town, or a rhythmizing open area of the embankment, became an essential quality of this public space.

Side note:
Already more than half a century ago, Martin Heidegger claimed that the sculptures illuminate the wasteland, create a habitable and oriented place and remove chaos from the space. If we are in 2003, in line with Heidegger, created an "oriented place" in Náměstí Svobody Square, ie. a node differing from other public space, emphasizing the linking of pedestrian routes in Švehlova street with pomink-f-ulrucha Pomník
F. Ulricha
Tylovo nábřeží embankment, our project was warmly welcomed by the leadership of Hradec Králové and even by the city public. Nevertheless, when the Town Hall of Hradec Králové ordered us to remove the statue of the Polish sculptor Piotr Bies at the end of 2010 – because the city wanted to fit a festive monument of Hradec Králové mayor JUDr. František Ulrich, we were surprised. An abortive monument of the sitting mayor, made out of diorite, violently and without public discussion placed between semantically different artifacts of Hořice sandstone sculpture symposia and thus destroying the existing concept of our installation, was not possible to perceive by us differently than a hidden instruction of the city government to end the Embankment of Sculptors. Fortunately, the botched memorial of the respected mayor was not accepted by the public. After the public's protests, it was removed from the square in July 2010 and taken to the deposit. The Embankment of Sculptors could continue. Perhaps it will still last for some time. Maybe until someone drinking beer comes to better idea than to carry lots of stone statues from Hořice into Hradec Kralové and back.