“I really like this czech photographer” – let me introduce Miroslav Hák…
By Miroslav Hák – Nude Study, Torso – 1938 – Photograph on baryta paper (printed later)
Miroslav Hák (1911 – 1978) was a Czech photographer. He was one of the members of Group 42. Famous Czech photographer Miroslav Hák was born on the 9th of May 1911 in Nová Paka. He learned photography with his father František Hák, photographer in Nová Paka. After his apprenticeship, Hák worked for the Langhans studios in Prague from 1925 to 1928, and from 1931 he worked in the Horn studios in Bratislava. From 1937 he was a photographer in the theater of E. F. Burian D34 in Prague, for which he created promotional photographs.
In the 1930s Miroslav Hák earned the position of one of the most respected representatives of modern Czech photography. In 1942 he became a member of art group Skupina 42, from 1948 he was a member of Society of Fine Artists Mánes and from 1958 he was a member of the Bilance group.
Hák was employed by the National Film Association, and from 1954 to 1967 he worked as a photographer at the Institute for Theory and Art history of the Czechoslovak Academy of Sciences. At this time he also created a series of photographs of Czech and Slovak actors, whom he photographed for the weekly periodical Kino.
Miroslav Hák was an exceptional photographer – he was able to create professional commercial photography as well as documentary photographs and photographs with art themes. He acquired his unusual sense for composition during his apprenticeship with his father, from whom he learned in his studio and on their numerous trips around Nová Paka and its surrounding villages. With his father he also began his first portrait photographs, he created portraits of the Nová Paka citizens and inhabitants of the surrounding villages, both in official photographs and artistic portraits.
Hák’s work was initially inspired by various influences of the interwar avant-garde and urban environment, which began to fascinate Hák mainly after his departure to Prague. Hák was universally oriented photographer; he was deeply influenced by Surrealism, which reflected in his technical skills. He also created a series of lyrical nudes, imaginary still-lives, as well as photographs with urban themes.
Miroslav Hák participated in over eighty exhibitions, he participated in the International Photographic Salon in Milan and Dijon, he regularly exhibited in Mánes in Prague. His exhibitions were held in Antwerp, Stockholm, Copenhagen, Oslo, in Austria and Switzerland, etc. Significant Hák’s comprehensive exhibition was held in Nová Paka, where he returned together with other Nová Paka artists and his close friends, sculptor Ladislav Zívr and painter František Gross, to present their works of that time.
After 1968 Miroslav Hák stopped working. He died on the 29th of June 1978.