Milena Bartlová

Originally trained as historian of medieval art, Milena Bartlová brought into Czech art history contemporary theory of Bruno Latour, in order to explain the role and social effects of religious icons.

Year: *1958
Country: Czech Republic

Departing from Latour’s idea about mediatory status of images, Milena Bartlová approaches in her seminal book Real presence (Skutečná přítomnost, Prague: Argo 2012) icons as interfaces that provided connection with holy person distant both in space and time, and explains how this observation may be approached as analogous to contemporary visual culture mediated through digital platforms. Her popular writings also navigate through ecological issues related to recent discourse about Anthropocene. Moreover, she participated as a curator on several exhibitions, for example Building a State (2015-2016), focused on construction of national identity and representation of Czechoslovakia in material culture, especially in art, architecture and design, and in utopian projects, such as proposed Czechoslovak railway tunnel to Adriatic sea.