Members – Helena Ťapajnová

Helena Ťapajnová

Daughter of her father

2014, kiln cast glass, tiffany glass, lampworking, float glued glass

The main topic of this project is the relationship between me and my father, Milan. He is an inventor, while his creativity is expressed in unusual objects which are aiming to improve everyday life. Many of his improvements are made regarding his own built greenhouse. For example, ones he connected the greenhouse with a pipe from the gas heating of our home, to heat up the greenhouse with steam to be able to grow plants during a cold spring. The transparent greenhouse is a place for growth and the black house is place of personal family memories. The combination of these two objects plays with the idea, that the expression of my own creativity is strongly connected to that one of my father and my roots.

It grows

2014, float sandblasted glass, wash drawing


2016, glass, metal, acoustic foam, rope

The performance „Shelter“ was the first action of my diploma work. This act was created on a base of my personal experience with loneliness and the need for protecting myself. The shelter is a visual expression of my personal instinct, which is to be hidden from the world, but always with the option to open up. It is a definition of my personal space, which i can control by a pulley and ropes. The arms of the shelter are movable, and because of that i can open and close the shelter from the inside. It was a constitutive decision to control the shelter solely by my own power. However, the act of closing myself inside the shelter is not an act of isolation. Thanks to the transparent walls which consist of glass, I’m not loosing contact with my surroundings, while my surroundings are able to observe me as well. The most powerful moment of the performance is the decision of being alone, a process accompanied by big emotions and physical effort. From the moment when i’m closed inside the shelter, I’m just with myself. I identify myself as the only one inside of this construction. Because i filled up the construction with this energy of loneliness i am able to deconstruct it. My deep experience of being the only one observing the inside of the construction allows me to do so. I’m opening the border of my shelter, so i can cross it. This last process comes with letting go and breaking the glass walls. The great noise which this produces is a big contrast to the silence which accompanied the main part of the performance. The performance represents a method of opening up and catharsis. The beginning of a search for new ways (also towards my dealing with the material of glass).


2019. glass blowing

The vase was created in collaboration with Fondation Beyeler for the occasion of the exhibition of The Young Picasso – Blue and Rose Periods. In Vase Resonate we can see a sensitive gradient between the colors blue and rose. This can be interpreted as a development in Picasso´s painting style from his blue and rose periods towards cubism. After pouring water into both of the vases and putting one into another, we can see a magical, performative moment of fluid optical change. That moment can bring us an idea of cubistic thinking. Every piece is handblown by Niesenglass. Photo credits: Reber Timo and Beretta Martino

Trio vases Dusk

2020, glass blowing

Light is crucial in the paintings of Edward Hopper. His interest was particularly taken by light, which enters a room and creates shadows and shades of colors on different surfaces. One can say that his paintings oscillate between light and darkness. For this project, the change of light as the essence of Hoppers paintings is interpreted into glass objects. The three vases are named after the different stages of dusk: Civil Dusk, Nautical Dusk, and Astronomical Dusk. Those are marked by three distinct angles of the disappearing sunlight under the horizon during sunset. The vases represent those stages of dusk by color as well as by shape, because the angles of the lips of the inner vases match the respective angle of light. The first stage of dusk, where the center of the sun’s disc goes 6° below the horizon in the evening, is represented by the vase “Civil Dusk”. At this stage, darkness slowly arrives. During Nautical Dusk, the upcoming night appears glamorous. The light on the horizon oscillates between pink and purple. The angle of the sunlight is now at 12° below the horizon. During Astronomical Dusk, the last tremor of light is embraced by the darkness around. At this stage, the sun’s position is 18° below the horizon.

Helena Ťapajnová

Klybeckstrasse 241

4057 Basel

077 419 38 28