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Mutual Inspirations Festival 2017 - Gregor Mendel


Memories of Living under Hitler and Stalin

Memories of Living under Hitler and Stalin

September 20, 2017, 12:00 PM

Dr. Renata Laxova, a Holocaust survivor and renowned Czech-American geneticist, shared her life story at the Czech Embassy in an intimate setting of over 100 people on September 18, 2017.

Laxova, who was born into a Jewish family, began with her tragic memories of life in Brno, Czechoslovakia, in 1938 as her “normal” childhood was uprooted and destroyed while Hitler’s power strengthened. She recounted meeting a couple, whose children were cold-heartedly murdered by the Nazis during Kristallnacht in neighboring Vienna. Fearing the worst, her parents put Laxova, who was just 8 years old, on a train along with other children in August 1939, the 8th and last special transport organized by Sir Nicholas Winton which safely made it to England.  “To this day, every time I meet an 8 year old, I think about that time,” Laxova said, contemplating the difficult decision her parents made as they sent her off into the unknown, blindly trusting the “British Committee for Children in Prague,” an entity they never met. Laxova then detailed her life in refuge with her foster family and her eternal bond with them. Laxova’s parents miraculously survived the Holocaust, albeit seeing and enduring sheer terror and inhumanity.

Fashion Show Featured in Press

Fashion Show Featured in Press

September 15, 2017, 12:30 PM

The Washington Diplomat published an article in their online Diplomatic Pouch about the recent fashion collection TRANSLATIONS by Iva Pfeiffer held at the Ambassador's residence. In the article, Iva said the best comments she got after the fashion show were from people who praised the pieces for their wearability. The article further reveals the inspiration behind the new collection.“I’m very much inspired by travelling,” she said. “This time, I was inspired by India, the block print and [the color] indigo. We have the indigo dye in the Czech Republic as well. I find it sort of intuitive in a way because I grew up with the blue print.” Check out the article by reporter Carrie Snurr online

Photo: Fashion Designer Iva Pfeiffer and Ambassador Kmoníček

DESIGNING WEARABLE ART: A Revolution in Sustainable Fashion

DESIGNING WEARABLE ART: A Revolution in Sustainable Fashion

September 14, 2011, 1:01 PM

Czech designer Iva Pfeiffer held an exclusive fashion show at the residence of Czech Ambassador Hynek Kmoníček and his wife Indira Gumarova on September 12 in Washington, previewing her newest collection TRANSLATIONS: Design Moving Between Cultures, which will be featured at Milan Fashion Week later this month. “I want to create wearable art,” says Iva Pfeiffer, who graduated last year from Raffles College of Design and Commerce in Sydney, Australia. Already, she has made a name for herself at New York Fashion Week and as one of only fifteen designers throughout the world chosen for a Mater Class at the Arts of Fashion Foundation in Paris in 2014. At the residence, fifteen multicultural models strutted down the grand staircase showcasing 20 garments in indigo blue, white, and silver, ranging from jumpsuits, to cocktail and evening wear, in the spring/summer 2018 collection. The fashion show was a prelude to the Mutual Inspirations Festival 2017- Gregor Mendel, focusing on the inspirations between Czech and American Cultures. 

Photo: Indira Gumarová, Cultural Attaché Šárka Vamberová, Czech Ambassador Hynek Kmoníček, Fashion Designer Iva Pfeiffer, and Assitant Brand Manager Sheena Rochiramani

Celebrating Gregor Mendel

May 03, 2017, 3:42 PM

For the year and in the fall of 2017, the Mutual Inspirations Festival honors Gregor Johann Mendel, the father of modern-day genetics.

Although his revolutionary deductions were not recognized in his lifetime, Mendel died convinced that his conclusions would one day be accepted for their contribution to "the developmental history of organic forms." Today, the brilliant Augustinian scientist, hailing from what is now the Czech Republic, is posthumously recognized worldwide for his years of tedious experimentation, utter detail and, of course, pioneering principles of inheritance,  the foundation of genetics. His work has inspired every continent, even Antarctica is home to the Mendel Polar Station, the Czech Republic’s research base.

The Mutual Inspirations Festival hopes to inspire all this fall.


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