Establishment of Richard Adam's collection
Thanks to its quality, focus and volume, Richard Adam's collection rightly ranks in the forefront of private and public collections of fine art in the Czech Republic. Its genesis dates back to the 1980s when Richard Adam started to collect pictures, besides his regular job. In the beginning, Adam preferred painters of the middle generation (from the 12/15 group and its surroundings, for instance: Ivan Ouhel, Vladimír Novák, Jiří Načeradský, Jiří Sopko and others).
His attention turned to contemporary works upon the onset of the new art generation of the 1980s and the restoration of free art production. Young students and graduates from the Academy of Fine Arts and the Academy of Art, Architecture and Design opposed the then established ideological fine art practices, where real art was marginal, finding its place rather in the unofficial or semi-official spheres. Their arrival onto the art scene was penetrative and brought a completely different aesthetics compared to the previous neo-avantgarde.
As Adam says, his first reaction to works promoting intentional anti-aesthetics and wild expression was quite reserved but later on, new works aroused his interest and desire to comprehend them. He started to visit studios of young artists and became familiar with the principles of new art production. Since then, he has focussed exclusively on contemporary art and started to systematically buy pictures by the youngest generation, for which he has sacrificed all his funds.
It is worth noticing that he did not stop with the 1980s generation (such as Petr Nikl, Jiří David, Jiří Kovanda, Antonín Střížek, Vladimír Kokolia and others), but also continued to explore new talents in the following years. They include not only fresh graduates of art schools but he also has his eye on the youngest painters who have not yet completed their studies. On the one hand, it is risky, but on the other also courageous and far-sighted. As there is nobody else who intentionally focuses on the most contemporary painting, he has the absolute choice.
His collection of contemporary painting is unique in the Czech environment, not only thanks to its volume (it contains approx. 1,500 works) but in particular thanks to its uniform selection and its quality. Adam presented his collection for the first time in Brno in 2006 and in the same year, also at the Rudolfinum gallery in Prague. Between 2006 and 2015, when together with Miroslav Lekeš they rented the Vaňkovka Machine Works in Brno, Adam considerably extended his collection while making it accessible also to the public, on a regular basis, in collective and solo exhibitions.