Zdeněk Košek

Czech Republic, 1949 - 2015

Zdeněk Košek worked as a typographer and drew caricatures and satirical cartoons for regional magazines and newspapers. A self-taught artist, he also produced a number of more or less conventional paintings. In the 1980s, a deep psychological divide gradually changed his perception of the world. In 1989 he was diagnosed as psychotic and had to stop working. Meteorology and weather are the main themes of his works on paper, as he thought that his duty was to master the meteorological phenomena. He spent his days in front of the window, convinced that he could provoke or control the weather, writing down everything that took place around him: the direction of the wind, the flight of the birds, sounds, the changes in temperature, different combinations of numbers, letters and chemical elements, etc. He used notebooks, maps, atlas and old magazines to draw the diagrams that served him as a direct means to influence weather—an indispensable ritual dictated to him and to which he abandoned himself in order to avoid his biggest fear: irreversible chaos. By sticking his schemes onto the window of his apartment, he communicated with birds, which he believed to be superior to mankind.