Born 17 September 1949 in Prague

  • 1964 -1968 Václav Hollar College and Secondary School of Fine Arts, Prague
  • 1968 – 1974 Academy of Fine Arts in Prague (Prof. A. Paderlík)
  • member of the 12/15 group and the Mánes Union of Fine Arts
  • 2001 – head of the painting studio, Academy of Fine Arts in Prague

Lives and works in Prague and Brnířov near Domažlice


Towards the end of the 1970s, a decade marked by political repression, Rittstein and other members of the emerging generation drew on the ‘New Figuration’ to offer a fiercely critical view of society depicting banality and dull everyday private life with heightened expressivity pushing their work to the boundaries of the grotesque. Rittstein’s drawings exude sarcasm and dark humour, while his paintings are monumental and display a mastery of technique. He has exhibited his work since 1976, both individually and in collective exhibitions – including at the Pompidou Centre in Paris, the Venice Biennale, and large Czech events at Prague Castle (1998) and the National Gallery (Veletržní Palace, 2003). His most recent large-scale exhibitions were again at the Veletržní Palace (2007 – 2008 – ‘Following a Wet Trace’), the Museum of Art in Olomouc, and the Aleš South Bohemian Gallery in Hlubová (2009). In 2007 he published a monograph (‘Following a Wet Trace’, Gallery, Prague).



The technology forced me to be disciplined (to mix carefully) – but in the end it was worth it. I enjoyed Ostrava so much that I would go again – it was a meeting of good people.