Idiom Mateje Kréna, foto Gabriel Urbánek
29. 12. 2023, WEBREDAKTOR

The so-called Idiom, a column made of 8,000 books, has been present in the vestibule of the Central Library at Mariánské Square since 1998. The author of the Idiom, sometimes dubbed the “Column of Knowledge“, is the Slovak artist Matej Krén.


During the 18 years of its existence, the Idiom book tower has become an integral part of the hall of the Central Library, drawing the attention of tourists and locals alike. It has even made it into the Lonely Planet guide and has been reproduced on the cover of Science magazine.

Matej Krén

Matej Krén is a world famous Slovak artist. He was born on 20 April 1958 in Trenčín, and he graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Bratislava and the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague. In his work, he uses books as a building material, from which he creates his sculptural objects and spatial installations. To Krén, the book, as an object with multiple meanings, is a fitting basic structural element, which prompts numerous associations and is deeply rooted within the subconscious. His work follows problems that exist beyond the book, yet the book provides him with an expressive metaphor and a vehicle for the problems to be depicted. Matej Krén forms books into objects or installations that may be entered or spatial situations that influence the observer. The artist communicates with the spectator and the installations he creates allow them to get first-hand experience of everything.

Warning! You may only take pictures of or film the Idiom for your own needs and without using the tripod. Please do not touch the work of art!

Idiom photo by Gabriel Urbánek.