Initiated by playwright Václav Havel, painter Theodor Pištěk and poet and artist Jiří Kolář, a prestigious award for young visual artists in the Czech Republic was established on 27 May 1990. The award bears the name of Jindřich Chalupecký, a leading Czech theorist, art and literary critic, writer and philosopher, who endorsed the title of the award at the end of his life.
The Award is presented annually in honor of Jindřich Chalupecký’s lifetime achievements and the activities he instigated in the unofficial avant-garde art scene after 1969 and the Soviet occupation. He advocated the independence and continuity of Czech non-conformist art with the tradition of Czech modernist art and the European art scene. He strove to connect ideological groups and layers of all generations to prevent spiritual and moral decline at that time. Despite his advanced age, the depth and broadness of his thinking, he always remained open to new, nascent tendencies and supported young art. For this reason, the award is presented to a young artist in order to enable the most talented and promising artists a direct contact with the development of today’s international art scene. The founders of the Jindřich Chalupecký Society wish to contribute to the development of Czech modern visual art and to preserve the memory of the legacy of a man whose life was dedicated to the fight for the fate of modern Czech art.