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284 01 Kutná Hora

Czech Republic

Kutná Hora

Kutná Hora is, as its name suggests, associated with the mining (kutání in Czech) of silver. In 1142 the first Cistercian monastery in the Czech lands was established in the nearby village of Sedlec and at the end of the 13th century the original mining settlement of Cuthna antiqua – Old Kutna - soon became a wealthy royal city. In 1300 King Václav II issued the mining legislation „Ius regale montanorum“ and in the same year he initiated a coinage reform. One century later another king, Václav IV, issued the Kutná Hora Decree, which amended the proportion of votes at Prague University in favour of the Czechs. Kutná Hora is therefore rightly considered to be the treasure-house of the land whose wealth gave strength to the expansion of the Kingdom of Bohemia. Its history and uniqueness were recognised in 1995 when the city was inscribed in the UNESCO World Cultural and Heritage List.

Ever since the end of the 13th century the history of Kutná Hora has been inseparably linked to the mining of silver ore. The historical centre is an architectural jewel of European importance, and the late gothic Church of St. Barbora and the Cathedral of Our Lady in Sedlec, rebuilt in the baroque gothic style, create a notional entrance gateway to the royal mining city.

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GASK – the Gallery of the Central Bohemian Region is based at the Jesuit College in the town of Kutná Hora. It is an institution whose collection and exhibitions are focused on art of the 20th and 21st centuries. It was founded in 1963 as the Central Bohemian Gallery, continued under the name of the Czech Museum of Fine Arts from 1993 to 2009 and has had its current name since 2009.

GASK presents modern and contemporary art through exhibitions that are conceived sensitively and inspiringly.  It follows on from the historical mission of the Jesuit College as a house of education by approaching its collection and exhibition programme on the criteria of authentic testimony, and it conveys their message in a way that is close to the understanding of contemporary viewers. In a similar spirit, GASK’s education department regularly arranges a programme of workshops and other events to accompany exhibitions. GASK caters for the needs of art researchers and also provides a venue for conferences and symposia. .

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