BIOGRAPHY: Bedrich Housa

Bedrich Housa was born in Prague, Czechoslovakia, on 12 April 1926. In the early 1940s, he received his initial training together with Jaroslav Goldschmied. After that, until 1950, he studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague, under Vladimir Silovsky. Housa started engraving stamps for Czechoslovakia in 1949.

In 1972, Housa won the award 'Engraver's Interpretation of a Work of Art', one of the categories of the stamp polls held annually by the Czechoslovakian daily Mlada Fronta. He won it for his stamp depicting Vaclav Hollar's engraving of 'Lady with Fur Cap'.

The works of the famous 17th century Czechoslovakian engraver Hollar can be found quite often in Housa's stamp work. In 1969, Hollar's engraving of the Spanish military leader Don Gonzalo Fernandez de Cordoba riding his horse was included in a set of works of art depicting horses. A similar set of 1976, depicting classic ship engravings, included the 'Dutch Merchantman' by Hollar, and Hollar's 'Lady with Flower' can be found in a 1983 Period Customs set.

But naturally, Hollar's work as interpreted by Housa is most often found in the annual Art series. Of those, his self-portrait of 1647, on an Art stamp of 1977, stands out most, as does his aforementioned 'Lady with Fur Cap'. That stamp also won in Mlada Fronta's catageory Best Stamp, which meant that Housa got to engrave the annual Mlada Fronta souvenir sheet as well. For this, he engraved a similar image of the lady, but as a progressive die proof.

In 1979, Housa showed that his talents to represent classic engraved works of art was not only limited to Hollar, when he engraved some of Dürer's work for the annual Art set of that year, including the most wonderful art work on the accompanying First Day Cover.

Housa's final stamp engravings date from 2011. In early 2020, he was honoured by the Czech Republic post with a stamp bearing his portrait. He was still well enough to attend the presentation of that stamp, but wuld pass away a few months later, on 7 May 2020.

You will find Bedrich Housa's database HERE.