Lenka Nebeská

Lenka Nebeská

(17. 8. 1984)

The young Czech artist Lenka Nebeská came to the fore three years ago when she succeeded in a competition announced by the Czech National Bank for a medal design commemorating the anniversary of the film director Karel Zeman. Medal designing has become her lifelong passion and she regards bas-relief work primarily as fun. Nevertheless, she can still find time for other activities. She restores tile stoves, and sometimes she also makes their replicas. She is also active in a family centre where she teaches art lessons and ceramics to children. If she has any free time left, she devotes it to reading classical literature which belongs among her hobbies. Her last artistic works include a medal commemorating a sad event in the history of Czechoslovakia: the invasion by the Warsaw Pact armies in 1968. The coinage was carried out by the Prague Mint in 2013.

Lenka Nebeská was born in Prague where she attended the School of Arts and Crafts. She studied medal design at the Secondary School of Applied Arts and the Higher Technical School in Jablonec nad Nisou. Her talent was formed by professors and artists such as Jiří Dostál, Jan Lukáš, Anselm Roskovec or Petr Horák. She is the youngest member of the Czech Association of Medal Artists.


If it were up to you, to which event or person would you like to dedicate a medal?
When I make artist’s medals, I sometimes think about it. At the FIDEM, which took place recently in Scotland, I represented myself with two bronze medals. One of them is dedicated to two great persons who, in my opinion, deserve our respect. Irena Sendlerowa, who is often wrongfully neglected, and famous Nicholas Winton – modest heroes who saved children during World War II. For me they are the personalities to whom I would like to dedicate a medal and whose stories I would like to show. In this way I would like to commemorate real people and events from the history of mankind that should never be forgotten.

You have recently succeeded with a design for a medal commemorating the Czech film director Karel Zeman. How did you see your chances against the strong competition?
Many medal-designing legends, about whom I learnt at school, participate in these competitions, so I usually do not think I have much of a chance, but I do not give up, on the contrary I see it as a challenge. I prepared two versions of the design for the anniversary of Karel Zeman. As I wanted to avoid the stereotype of showing a portrait, I decided to make the second design without it and I thought it would not have much success. In the end it proved to have been a right choice.

What did you use as a basis when designing the medal?
Mainly Zeman’s films because he belongs among my favourite film directors and I have liked his films since my childhood. I based my design on what usually first occurred to me when I heard the name of Karel Zeman. Immediately, I thought of a submarine, an airship and an octopus which had always fascinated me. Therefore I decided that I had to include this somehow in the design. The obverse side is based on animated films, in particular on my favourite Krabat – The Sorcerer’s Apprentice (“Čarodějův učeň”).

Have you kept your first minted piece?
Yes, I have. It was a completely new experience for me. I first learned what a minted medal was when I worked on a task we had been assigned at school in Jablonec. The students of the first and second grades were told to make designs of Czech euro coins. It was hardly expected that a first-year student would succeed in this task, especially in the first term. Well, they chose all my designs of the obverse sides, and my first experiment with the bas-relief was therefore successful.

Another artworks prepared by LenkA NebeskÁ

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