Město továren. Brno v 19. až 21. století

Title in English The City of Factories. Brno from the 19th to the 21st Century


Year of publication 2014
Type Chapter of a book
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Arts

Description The chapter in the publication about Moravian Manchester is devoted the phenomenon of Brno as a city of factories and focuses on two main aspects: 1) building history of selected production facilities and related infrastructure; 2) iconography of the textile industry and the factory landscape of Brno suburbs. The central issue of the article is the changing approach to the textile industry as one of the city’s hallmarks. Brno textile factories made up parts of residential blocks in the suburbs situated close to the city centre and affiliated to Brno in 1850. Free-standing textile factories are still found in suburbs Zábrdovice, Obřany etc. An important factor for the operation of these factories was the close proximity of watercourses. Textile factories were usually built in the form of "boxes" of several floors the interiors of which were not separated. Historical styles prevailing in Brno include late classicism and the neo-renaissance spanning the 1830s and 1860s, and protofunctionalist and engineering architecture from the period around 1910. Over time, Brno factories lost their original production function (with a few exceptions) and the buildings are now used as warehouses, offices, flats, etc. However, many have fallen into disrepair and their further existence is uncertain. In our post-industrial era, the question of the future of the industrial era legacy appears ever more pressing. The approach to the Moravian Manchester phenomenon and its metamorphoses also echoes in visual iconography(e.g. works by Hugo Charlemont, Eduard Milén and Jaroslav Král) and literature (Josef Merhaut, Ivan Blatný). While in the 19th century textile industry iconography was dominated (in contrast to visually impressive images of ironworks, rolling mills and engineering plants) by descriptive objectivity and efforts at industrialists’ representation, in the first half of the 20th century the factory landscape of Brno suburbs became a major source of inspiration for artists.
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