Michal Neugarten Portrait in the Studio Diptych

Michal Neugarten 1978*

Michal Neugarten was born in 1978 in Prague.
He grew up in Liberec, northern Bohemia. This border town, rich in cultural contexts, shaped his initial attitude to art, which can be traced in his works up to this day. As a child, he spent a lot of time in the studio and prepared several small exhibitions.

Later, he joined the Secondary School of Applied Arts for Glassmaking. Despite the specialization, he still pursued painting, and exhibited his paintings and photographs. He returned to Prague to study at the Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design, where he graduated at Vladimír Kopecký’s studio. It was there that he gained a great insight and creative freedom, and developed as a painter. He also performed in many group events, attended symposia and presented several key exhibitions. Not limiting himself to visual arts, he published several collections of poetry and developed a deep interest and passion for jazz, which has lasted until the present. He is a keen trumpeter himself.

After graduating, to make a living he took the position of a director at Czech state television. Successively, he tried several roles in the film industry, but making commercials and jingles never gave him a sense of fulfillment. At the moment, he is trying to reduce his workload as an art-director at a TV station, considering it more as a hobby, and devote as much time as possible to art, and painting in particular.

Michal Neugarten’s last name is a reference to a man he has always looked up to – his grandfather, a famous cameraman ( Jindřich Novotný – Neu ), his wife’s garden surrounding his studio (Garten) and German origin of the city he was brought up in . Formerly known as Reichenberg, Liberec was part of Deutschböhmen – province of German Bohemia, whose inhabitants were deported after WWII. The city still has a lot of German cultural monuments and architecture, including Michal Neugarten’s family house. As romantic as the name may seem, it was actually artificially created and given by the German authorities to families who moved to German municipalities from foreign countries.