Věra Janoušková went through practically the same development as all the other important members of her generation that studied after WWII. They tried to forget their academic training, although in her case it was with the liberal Josef Wagner, as fast as possible and looked for models in the tradition of classical modernism or in the more recent international models (Moore, Marine, and Giacometti). Generally around the break of the 1950s and 60s they started to find their original expression, which corresponded to the development in the world. In Janoušková’s case there was one exceptional early work, which is different from this scheme and at the same time predetermines her future expression. It is her “tapestry” Odyssey (1948), which is actually a painting created from pieces of fabric sewn on an old blanket, inspired by similar textile collages by Roger Bissière which she saw at the exhibition of contemporary French art in the Mánes Gallery in Prague in 1946. Back then, it was a hot novelty: Bissière himself did not introduce them in Paris until his exhibition at the break of 1947 and 1948 at the René Drouin Gallery, where they were admired by Dubuffet and others from the circle of this famous gallery. And it is precisely Dubuffet’s note that strongly resonates in the work of Věra Janoušková from the break of the 1950s and 60s.
After that there was an era more than 10 years long, when our art was practically hermetically isolated from the happenings in the world. During this time, Janoušková made traditionally felt statues mostly of sitting figures filled with distinctive lyricism. At the very end of this decade it was, for example, her bronze Orpheus – Homage to Gluck (1959) in the spirit of Moore. The static composition of the sitting figure and an accent on the rich surface structure are elements that we can also find in her later work, based on completely different principles. The path to her new direction was unexpectedly fast. In the following year of 1960, she produced the standing Venus, where the accent of the surface texture is enhanced by adding slag. And in the same year there was once again the Sitting statue – actually a statue-symbol, this time in plaster with an exposed iron construction, where the artist definitely parted with the traditional image of a modelled figure. Later followed some sort of figurative idols – standing, flat and single view, once again with an emphasis on the structure of the surface with colour, prints or objects embedded in the plaster; these statues loosely correspond to the so-called “Czech informel”, as well as with some other expressions of world art – the already mentioned Dubuffet, early Césare or the grotesque iron figures by Max Ernst.
Shortly after, she discovered her individual technique, which became her armorial expression. Fascinated by the colours and glazed surface of old cooking pots, which she was finding at garbage dumps, she welded – actually “stitched” with welding wire – statues from them (usually figures again), which actually resembled some sort of spatial collages. In addition to these she was creating monochromic, usually purely white statues from asbestos cement, which often express a certain purely female lyrical accent (Bed with Bedding, 1964-1965). Paper collages became an important element of her work since the 1970s; taking over, in many ways, the basic principles of her sculpting work, for example, recycling of used materials (posters, fashion patterns); for that matter, we can perceive her collage as a planar equivalent of an assemblage. Once again, we can find here a link to the grotesque and hieratic principle; the artist combines various materials and technical procedures such as ink drawing, frottage, burning, torn and crumpled paper.
During the 1960s she and her husband, Vladimír Janoušek, belonged to the most distinct personalities of the Czech scene. However, they experienced a radical turn with the coming of Normalization, when they both belonged to the most afflicted artists. They ceased to receive public commissions; their contacts made abroad had to be discontinued; they were allowed to exhibit only on the periphery. Moreover, Janoušek suffered with a serious disease for many years and died in 1986. The death of her partner with whom they formed the ideal pair on the artistic, as well as human level, hit her very deeply and evoked a personal crisis, which reflected in darker positions of her work. Nevertheless, thanks to her essentially optimistic nature she overcame this crisis and gradually returned to her characteristic techniques including welding of objects. She went back to creating paper collages at the time when she started experiencing health problems due to advanced age, which made it impossible for her to pursue sculpture.
2011 - Věra Janoušková, Intuice a řád (kat. Machalický J., Šašek J., 6s.)
2010 – Česká koláž (Machalický J., 254s. ed. Gallery s. r. o.)
2006 – UB 12, Studie, rozhovory, dokumenty (Slavická M., Šetlík J., 337s.) ISBN 80-86990-07-9
2005 – České ateliéry (Brozman D. a kol., 519s., č.,angl., ed. ART cz) ISBN 80-239-5528-4
2004 - Věra Janoušková, Vladimír Janoušek: Výběr z díla (Čechová O. a kol., kat. 80s.), ZČG v Plzni, ISBN 80-86415-27-9
2004 – Šedesátá /TheSixties (Juříková M., Železný V., 414s.,č.,angl.) ISBN 80-239-3406-6
2001 - Věra Janoušková, Retrospektiva (kat. Chlupáč M. a kol., 92 s.)
2001 – Věra Janoušková Já to dělám takhle (Zemina J.,162s.,č., angl.)ISBN 80-7215-162-2
1998 - Věra Janoušková, Gal. Aspekt, (kat. Chalupecký J. a kol., 40s.)
1997 – Česká koláž (Dryje F. a kol., 165s.) ISBN 80-86010-04-X
1997 – Poselství jiného výrazu (Nešlehová M., 286s., č.,angl.) ISBN 80-902481-0-1
1996 – Umění zastaveného času (Beran Z. a kol., 268s., č, angl.) ISBN 80-7056-050-9
1993 – Nová figurace (kat. Petrová E., 104s.)
1992 – Minisalon (kat. Skalník J., 220s., angl., čes.)
1992 - Věra Janoušková, Sochy a koláže z let 1960/1992 (kat. NG, Erben V., 36s.)
1991 - Tradition und Avantgarde in Prag (kat. Gruša J. a kol., 220s.)
1990 – Nová skupina (kat Hlaváček J. a kol., 84s.) ISBN 80-900051-9-5
1982 - Věra Janoušková, (kat Zemina J., 20s)
1979 - L'art aujourd´hui en Tchecoslovaquie (Bénamou G, 190s., fr.)
1970 - Tschechische Skulptur des 20. Jahrhunderts (kat. Kotalík JT., Procházka V., 84s.)
1969 – Socha a město (kat. Moulis J. a kol., 114s.)
1967 - Mostra d'arte contemporanea Cecoslovacca (kat. Cherchi LCS, Zemina J., 60s.)
1967 - Věra Janoušková – Sochy (kat. Vachtová L., 22s.)
1966 – Aktuální tendence českého umění (kat. Míčko M., 162s.)
1965 - La transfiguration de l'art tcheque (kat. Philippe J., 16s.)
1964 – UB 12 (kat. Zemina J., 6s.)
1962 – Tvůrčí skupina UB 12 (kat. Šetlík J., 16s.)
1960 – Adriena Šimotová, Pastely a tempery, Věra Janoušková, Sochy (kat. Šetlík J., 12s.)