Zdeněk Kudělka - Lenka Kudělková, New Findings Regarding Villa Tugendhat. In: 57. Bulletin Moravské galerie v Brně (Bulletin of the Morvian Gallery in Brno), 2001, pp. 92-98

After the outbreak of World War II, Villa Tugendhat was confiscated by the German state secret police, becoming the property of the German Reich as of January 1942. The history of the house from October 1939, when it was taken over by the Gestapo, up to the beginning of the 1950s is particularly uncertain as there is a lack of existing written documentation. The property rights and construction situation of the house was described in detail over the years 1940-1950 has been described in an extensive article by Zdeněk Kudělka and Lenka Kudělková. The authors have based their research on the, up until now unknown and only recently processed, sources from the funds of the Moravian Regional Archive, including amongst other things The Housing Tax Return or The Protocol on the State of the House from the year 1945. The article includes reproductions of the plans for Villa Tugendhat from the year 1929 which the Brno City Museum obtained from an anonymous donor in the year 1999.

The article can be downloaded on the Czech version of our web pages.

Profesor Zdeněk Kudělka (4th of December 1926 in Brno – 18th of November 2000 in Brno) was one of the first students of the “Brno School of Art History” which consisted of Professor Václav Richter’s historical-philosophical conception of art history as well as Professor Albert Kutal’s refined, formal interpretation of work as an artistic product. He became an assistant professor in the Brno art history seminars. His humanistic and moral views, however, were in conflict with the totalitarian regime, leading to his premature forced departure from the academic environment. He taught at Palacký University in Olomouc over the years 1964-69 and consequently once again in Brno at Jan Evangelista Purkyně University where he received his associate professorship in the year 1969 (this Brno university, established in the year 1919, at present once again bears the original name of the first Czechoslovak President, Masaryk University). Zdeněk Kudělka was finally granted the highest academic title after the year 1989 culminating his many years of scientific, research and teaching activity.
Kudělka's range of research was remarkable. He was an active critic and theoretician in the area of contemporary visual arts in the 1950s and 1960s. Under the influence of Václav Richter the centre of his research work became architecture. He was initially focused on Baroque architecture with his research culminating in the year 1996 with the monumental monograph Umění baroka na Moravě a ve Slezsku (Baroque Art in Moravia and in Silesia) with additional authorial contributions from Ivo Krsek, Miloš Stehlík and Josef Válka. He also built upon the work of V. Richter with research on Romanesque architecture. His published materials and shorter treatises were compiled in the works Románská architektura na Moravě (Romanesque Architecture in Moravia) and in the Histories of Czech Visual Arts.
The, in all probability, most fertile area of Kudělka's research activity consisted of 20th century architecture having been one of the first Czech art historians with this particular focus. His work in this field culminated in the second half of the 1960s with the excellent monograph Bohuslav Fuchs and the extensive work Brněnská architektura 1919-1928 (Brno Architecture 1919-1928). At the end of the 1990s he crowned this area of his research with his contribution to the preparation and realization of the permanent exhibition on Brno between-the-wars architecture in the Brno City Museum which was accompanied by the catalogue O nové Brno. Brněnská architektura 1919-1939 (On the New Brno. Brno Architecture 1919-1939). He cooperated on this project with his wife Lenka and with Jindřich Chatrný.
Zdeněk Kudělka is the author of the main comparative study of Villa Tugendhat which was enclosed in the year 2000 along with the application for registration of the structure onto the UNESCO List of World Cultural Heritage. Z. Kudělka first published his initial findings connected with this remarkable building in the year 1971 only to return to the subject years later with this excellent piece consisting of not only a detailed analysis of the architecture, but also a summary of the relationship between the architect and the commissioners (the monograph Villa Tugendhat was published after his death in the year 2001). Also of particular interest is Kudělka's contribution Moderní architektura a teorie památkové péče (Modern Architecture and the Theory of Monument Care), which pointed out the senseless existence of a border between the 'old' and the 'new'.
Zdeněk Kudělka ranks among the leading researchers on the work of Adolf Loos. His study Činnost Adolfa Loose v Československu (The Activities of Adolf Loos in Czechoslovakia) currently ranks among the key source materials. Also of great interest were his theoretical considerations in the treatise Pojetí obývaného prostoru u Adolfa Loose (The Concept of Dwelling Space in the Work of Adolf Loos). He was the first to make records of Loos' Pilsen builder Bořivoj Kriegerbeck (1891-1975) available to the public, he having contributed to the construction of the Müller Villa in Prague as one of the employees of the construction company Kapsa and Müller.
Zdeněk Kudělka made an essential contribution, arising from the Brno art history tradition influenced by the Viennese environment, to Czech art scholarship. His research method was based on a versatile analysis of works of art as well as on painstaking archival and material research, being stimulating both in terms of the methodology and the factual aspect.  In his work as a teacher Zdeněk Kudělka was known not only for his specialised erudition, but also for his one-of-a-kind personal charm, gentleness and sense of humour. His work with students was an essential part of his research methods.


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Úvod ke katalogu výstavy Bedřicha Rozehnala, Brno 1967
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Zapomenutý brněnský stavitel, In: 54. Bulletin Moravské galerie v Brně, 1998, s. 96n (společně s Lenkou Kudělkovou)
Spolupracovník Adolfa Loose o Müllerově vile, In: 55. Bulletin Moravské galerie v Brně, 1999, s. 205n
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Katalog stálé expozice Muzea města Brna I a II, Muzeum města Brna 2000 (společně s Lenkou Kudělkovou a Jindřichem Chatrným)
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Vila Tugendhat, Muzeum města Brna 2001 (s fotografiemi Libora Teplého)