Hermit Foundation and Center for Metamedia Plasy

Documentation from the CMP Archives
1992 – 1999

One central focus of the Agosto Foundation’s Mediateka is on supporting research into various archives for the unpublished, forgotten or newly re-discovered documentation of art activities from the recent past. As part of this commitment, we are building a web presentation dedicated to the activities of the Hermit Foundation and the Center for Metamedia, as manifested by the Plasy Symposia of 1992–1999. The collection also includes audio and video recordings that document the Hermit symposia, including the famous photography exhibition 9x9 of 1981.

Artistic events and activities in the (former) Cistercian monastery of Plasy have a long history, but this media archive concentrates mainly on the series of events initiated by the Hermit Foundation and the Center of Metamedia Plasy. This series of activities began in the winter of 1991 and ended during the winter of 1999. In spite of their longevity, there is very little reference material about these events circulating in the public sphere.

We aim to provide a nonlinear collection and overview of the various surviving data, materials, and documentation, including photographs, texts, video and sound. Each item has been updated and revised and is provided with supplementary commentary where needed. This documentation still exists due to the foresight of the participants, who have maintained their own personal archives. Most of the photographs come from the archives of Daniel Šperl, some are provided by Gert de Ruijter, Iris Honderdos and Radovan Kodera. Many other images were dispersed among participants and visitors, who have kindly provided them for the media archeology project, such as Avraham Eilat, and David Miller. The videos have been digitized from VHS tapes stored in boxes for 25 years and their quality is usually poor. Sometimes the author of the documentation is unknown. Inevitably, a certain part of the documentation has been lost forever, as was the case with all physical evidence of the activities of the Center for Metamedia.

The activities of the Hermit Foundation/Center for Metamedia Plasy/Civic Association of Friends of Art in Plasy took place over the years with the support of several funding bodies, foremost of which were: the Foundation Pro Helvetia Ost-West (1996-1998), Foundation for Contemporary Art/Soros Center for Contemporary Art, Prince Bernhard Fonds, Het Mondrian Stichting, The Ministry of Culture of Czech Republic, and others.

The core of this research is led by Miloš Vojtěchovský, the main initiator of many of the Plasy symposia. In addition, Radoslava Schmelzová has made several in-depth examinations of the Plasy archive material prior to this survey. Thanks to Jo Williams and Iren Stehli, among others. The technical aspects of the project are managed by Lloyd Dunn.

The rights for the items in this presentation remain with their creators. This project is still under construction, with new material appearing regularly.

In 2018, the publication of the archive of the Hermit Foundation Center for Metamedia Plasy 1992-99 was supported in part by a grant of 70,000 CZK from the Foundation for Contemporary Art Prague from funds provided by the Gestor copyright protection association.

FCCA a Gestor

Symposia

Alistair McLennan, 1999, Plasy, foto: Daniel Šperl

On the Hermit Symposia at the Plasy Monastery

A Refuge for Artists
Miloš Vojtěchovský interviewed by Lenka Dolanová
2011

The 9x9 Exhibition

Plasy Monastery
Catalogue text by Anna Fárová, 1981

Hermit I

Phonurgiae Liber
Symposium and Festival
April – June 1992
Plasy Monastery

02_fludd

Growthrings

Hermit II
June – July 1993
Plasy Monastery

Transparent Messenger

Hermit III
June – July 1994
Plasy Monastery

Die Fabrikanten, IRONET

Residency, Conference
Autumn–Winter 1994
Plasy

Feedback. Das Phänomen der Rückkopplung in Wissenschaft und Kunst

Symposium: The Phenomenon of Feedback in Science and Art
Kunstverein Giannozzo in cooperation with Hermit Foundation
2–4 September, 1994
Plasy Monastery

Sine Aqua Ruet

Fungus: Inquiry of Place 1145–1995

Art Symposium and Exhibition about Ecology and Art
24 September – 23 October, 1994
Plasy Monastery

Meridian Crossings

Hermit IV.
Entartic Shelf Festival
27 June – 5 July, 1995
Plasy Monastery/Emauzy Monastery, Prague

Near the Beginning

Symposium
August – September 1997
Center for Metamedia Plasy

Limbo II

1st Paneuropean Santorium
June 19-22, 1998
Plasy Monastery

Fairy-Tales

International symposium
Center for Metamedia
September, 1999
Plasy Monastery

Pantograph - A Tool for Mediation

transnational platform meeting
Plasy Monastery, June 7 - 12, 1999
Center for Metamedia Plasy

À la Recherche du Temps Perdu

Plasy and Hermit No. I, II, III.
Program for Czech Radio Vltava — Radioateliér 2018
Editor: Ladislav Železný, mastering: Stanislav Abrahám