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Beauty of Čičmany

Mgr.art. Michaela Bednárová
Puojd s.r.o, March 22, 2016

What you didn't know about Čičmany. Flashy misery.

Photo: Daniel Dluhý
https://www.puojd.sk/
Photo: Daniel Dluhý

Authentic village Čičmany is a pride of our traditional culture and source of inspiration for designer. That may be why the authors of "Made in Slovakia” project(Nina šošková a Lenka Sršňová) decided to do their first act of it in this village. Puojd had the privilege of being a part of the project team. Michaela Bednárová, the main designer of Puojd, will now share with you some interesting facts that you might have not known..

At the end of this hot summer I was invited to participate on the project "Made in Slovakia" that presents our cultural heritage to people by organizing creative workshops in the village Čičmany. To be honest at first I wasn't very happy about the invitation. I've always had Čičmany for sort of a mainstream of traditional Slovak culture. I have prejudiced them that they're overrated at the expense of other interesting and beautiful Slovak villages. This all vanished when I saw the first wooden house and changed completely after I read the history of Čičmany. Now I even consider them underrated.

One has to see it once and not hear about it hundred times. Mr. and Mrs. Kudjak who are in charge of tourism here are responsible for a neat atmosphere of a small village and they deal with processing of their traditional symbols and architecture very gently. It was after talking to Mr. JurajKudjak, who himself is knitting traditional Čičmany knee-high socks when I decided to make "my own" Čičmany socks. I've tried to create unusual design that wouldn't follow original embroideries but would reflect the current reality. Čičmany are patterns on wooden houses signed by aging; they are cracks of wood that cuts through otherwise perfect geometric design, unusually minimalistic for traditional folk culture and this is the essence that I wanted to bring into my Čičmany socks.

Photo: Michaela Dutková
https://www.puojd.sk/
Photo: Michaela Dutková

Typically in Puojd every product has a funny name. But here that was not necessary. If something is already called "butts" (orig."ritki") why bother thinking anyway?

Final stage of every product making is creating it's cover and this time it came in really handy that the designer of lettering OndrejJób was with us that summer in Čičmany and he created special lettering inspired by this village.

Photo: Michaela Dutková
https://www.puojd.sk/
Photo: Michaela Dutková
Photo: Michaela Dutková
https://www.puojd.sk/
Photo: Michaela Dutková

Even though it doesn't relate to my socks very much, I would like you to read one text to remind history from the chronicle of Čičmany. The history of the village is so rough it could break your heart. One wrong after another. Fires. Barren land, inability to find work, poverty. Travelling, wandering for better living. Four families (unrelated) living under one roof. There were times when they called Čičmany a flashy misery...

„Only few hours after formatting of Slovak state on 14 March 1939 could people of Čičmany experience it's sovereignty that in small (in Čičmany) and big (international relation) tolerated Nazi expandability of Germans. „On March 22, 1939“ - wrote the notary public of Čičmany- „at about 9 o'clock in the morning came to Čičmany a lorry with PavolCiger, building contractor, together with 15 other men from Gajdel (Klacno) armed by hunting and revolving guns. The lorry has stopped just outside the building that belonged to the local inn- and shopkeeper JozefGlasel and they took over the whole building. With the guns pointed people (The owner, servants and guests) they started to go through the rooms. In the meanwhile PavolCiger came to my office with two armed men and declared that they came to sort out the Jew and claim his old personal debt. Also this guy Ciger showed me some sort of a letter from Deutsche Partei (German Party) in Nemecke (German) Pravno, (now NitrianskePravno) in which the party suggests to follow his orders.... My attempt for reconciliation was unsuccessful and the armed men pointing at me with their revolving guns and threatening me to take me with them were trying to get the money from me using violence with arms in their hands.“
People of the village took side of Glasel and a threat of fight and bloodshed was in the air. The situation was sorted by an accident. Motorized German army coming back from military drill came to the village. People of Čičmany went home, but the Jewish innkeeper had to pay 1000 crowns in cash and he had to put in writing that he agrees to pay another almost 11,000 crowns. At the end the notary public adds: „this cruel act against the law of armed group that came from Gajdl ruined public order and safety in the village and almost had far-reaching and bloody consequences. People of Čičmany who value order and peace in the village upmost, and who despite a big annoyance over unlawful acting of strangers kept their heads calm and avoided bloodshed when prompted by their superior were sure that the truth is on their side and that they are obeying laws. Because our village Čičmany is still receiving threats and messages from the above-mentioned citizens of Gajdl, people ofČičmany are kindly asking you to act and fix the matter in the best interest of safety and order. “
And the regime authorities acted under the racist Jewish codex. Despite the references and protests of the city council and the local priest was the local innkeeper JozefGlasel along with this family deported on July 17, 1942 to concentration camp from where he never did return.

sunrise, photo: Daniel Dluhý
https://www.puojd.sk/
sunrise, photo: Daniel Dluhý
Lenka Sršňová a Nina Šošková , photo: Daniel Dluhý
https://www.puojd.sk/
Lenka Sršňová a Nina Šošková , photo: Daniel Dluhý
VNS workshop participants,photo: Daniel Dluhý
https://www.puojd.sk/
VNS workshop participants,photo: Daniel Dluhý
VNS workshop participants,photo: Daniel Dluhý
https://www.puojd.sk/
VNS workshop participants,photo: Daniel Dluhý
VNS workshop participants,photo: Daniel Dluhý
https://www.puojd.sk/
VNS workshop participants,photo: Daniel Dluhý
VNS workshop participants,photo: Daniel Dluhý
https://www.puojd.sk/
VNS workshop participants,photo: Daniel Dluhý
traditional socks from Čičmany byJuraj Kudjak,photo: Daniel Dluhý
https://www.puojd.sk/
traditional socks from Čičmany byJuraj Kudjak,photo: Daniel Dluhý
traditional socks from Čičmany by Juraj Kudjak,photo: Daniel Dluhý
https://www.puojd.sk/
traditional socks from Čičmany by Juraj Kudjak,photo: Daniel Dluhý
designers and artists of VNS project,photo: Daniel Dluhý
https://www.puojd.sk/
designers and artists of VNS project,photo: Daniel Dluhý