Prague: An Introduction

Studiolum Free University by Tamás Sajó

Dr. Tamás Sajó is an art historian, translator, travel guide and blogger. He specializes in reading and revealing the historical and cultural meaning of situated artworks (icons in churches, the genius loci of architectural ensembles, and the like) and historically-steeped places with a special interest in what has disappeared, or is in the process of being lost. Tamás Sajó was part of the Agosto Foundation residency program in November and December, when he focused on the reconstruction of the pre-asanace Jewish quarter on the basis of old maps, photos and drawings. More about Tamás and his research you can find here.


Artist Residency




Tamás Sajó

22 Feb – 15 June, 2021



The faces of Rembrandt. The exhibition of the National Gallery of Prague on the 350th anniversary of Rembrandt’s death, focusing on the most important Rembrandt painting held in Prague. vimeo

The Prague of Emperor Charles IV. The beginnings of a metropolis. When Prague was the capital of Europe. The structure, monuments and great artists, society and history of the city in its medieval golden age. vimeo

The medieval art of Bohemia, on the basis of the exhibition of the National Gallery of Prague, one of the richest medieval collections in Europe. vimeo

The Prague of Emperor Rudolf. Renaissance and Mannerism, alchemy and astrology (Kepler! Tycho Brahe!), magnificence and eroticism, the Reformation and Counter-Reformation before the collapse at the Battle of White Mountain. Impressions of a rich and contradictory age. vimeo

Prague’s Jewish quarter. Today we only see the tip of the iceberg, the few remaining synagogues and cemeteries that were spared from the demolition of the quarter between 1893 and 1914. However, Josefov was a huge, organic neighborhood, with a thousand years of history, old streets and houses, the reconstruction of which, on the basis of the documents, photos and drawings of the period, was the central topic of the stipend offered to me by the Agosto Foundation. I will present this vanished Jewish quarter, virtually restored on the computer. vimeo

Prague Art Nouveau. The Jugendstil/Secession and Symbolist painting, sculpture and architecture of a rich, civilized and progressive city at the turn of the century and beyond. A world both known and unknown to us. vimeo

Modern architecture in Prague in the early 20th century. The overall picture of Prague is dominated by medieval buildings, towers, churches, palaces and arcaded squares. But walking the streets of the city, Art Nouveau, Functionalist and Art Deco buildings that have emerged from the end of the 19th century stand in prominent places, enriching the architectural fabric of the city with a definite early modern layer. vimeo

Czech photography in the 20th century. A history of the sarcastic and sensitive Czech photography from the beginnings in the 19th century to The Firemen’s Ball-type visual criticism of socialism. In this presentation, we will accompany the nearly one hundred and fifty years of its history through pictures by the best photographers, documenting the turning points in Czech history. vimeo

Kafka was here. The literary cafés of old Prague. vimeo

The Royal Route in Prague. The ceremonial route of the coronations since the 14th century, from the eastern city gate across the river to the Cathedral in the Castle. A completing summary of Prague’s history through the centuries-old monuments strung along the route.

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Tamás Sajó, art historian, translator and blogger, has prepared an introductory online course on various aspects of history of Prague and the art of its historical periods. For more than a decade he has been blogging about his travels and observations on art history at Poemas del río Wang.