Stage Entrance – Szentendre’s Café and Gallery Spot („Folt”) | „One + 1” – From Pink to the National Colours | A Clear Guidance – A Show by Farkas Varga | Manual Focus – A Joint Show by Zsombor Barakonyi and Zbynek Sedlecky
Katalin Kopin: Stage Entrance – Szentendre’s Café and Gallery Spot („Folt”)
This is a joint where even the bartender is an artist; where pictures change hands in-between two glasses of watered-up wine; where a geranium makes its home in a military boot. A joint, in brief, that attracts artists like a dent in the pavement attracts rainwater.
The riddle why artists like to be in certain cafés has not been solved up till now. The secret of the Dome or the Rotonde in Paris, or that of the Abbasia and the Japanese in Budapest is still shrouded in mystery. In any case, there are places even today that need no websites, trendy looks, exquisitely folded serviettes, or leather couches to be haunted by many. To take Szentendre only, just such a café is the Dalmatian in Szamárhegy, a haunt of the artists belonging to the Lajos Vajda Studio, or the Crown in Main Square where some of the older generation of Szentendre artists are sure to turn up.
The Spot („Folt”) Café launched only recently, i.e. last March, also qualifies for a place among them. It is located just a stone’s throw from the pedestrian zone made too close for comfort by incessant flocks of tourists, but not further away from the musums and galleries than another stone’s throw. Artists have descended upon it in no time, making themselves at home with their works of art. The café has already been a venue for exhibitions, auctions, performances, founding sessions, and conferences. It’s here that passions and emotions peel out bringing forth many new ideas and projects.
The first exhibition set up in Spot Café was called „Blind Spot” probably because the pieces themselves were invisible; they were verbally present, though, since descriptions of them were sent in by the artists, Ottó Vincze, Rudolf Pacsika, and László feLugossy by name – a strong list for starters. Next in line was the performance-laden self-introduction of the newly formed Forgács Society, a team of artists just losing their base through the dissolution of Artunion Gallery, and only too happy to find a new base so quickly in Spot Café.
And now, the one-man show of Balázs Csizmadia (a member of the Forgács Society) who has apparently relinquished the respectable art of gesture painting to vent his passions through some wrecked plates of metal, but his passions border on much softer, lyrical emotions at times. To use a musical analogy, he is pre-occupied with the medium of symphonic metal. Sunsets, beams of light coexist in his works with some brutally crumpled and ground metallic surfaces. It is a powerful contrast, just like the one supplied by the reincarnation of a Coke-advertisement on the backside of one of his plates. On his work called „The Slave” he had ground back the enamel paint several times in order to create a stream of light broken up on the metal surface.
His latest works are computer graphics with line structures the width of a cobweb, and also some paintings on metal populated by ominous shadowy figures. So speaks the visitors’ book about those: „The things on the walls consume my soul, and so I have become a more complete person”.
And so it’s all happening in the Spot Café of Szentendre, amid jam sessions pouring from loudspeakers and yellow haze pouring from the coffee machine, art, and a touch of the Szentendre spirit brushed up again by the youngest generation.
„One + 1” – From Pink to the National Colours
25 June – 11 September
First Hungarian Spectacle Storage, Diszel near Tapolca
One of the most peculiar provincial exhibition sites of Hungary offers another exciting show – partly a selection of Barnabás Winkler’s large collection of pink Zsolnay chinaware, and partly a selection of the Storage’s huge collection of objects bearing Hungary’s red-white-and-green national colours. The latter part of the exhibition is a mix of high art, ethnography, arts and crafts, posters, printed matter, frontispices of books and tabloid newspapers, sentimental trash, historic documents and so on from the early 19th century right to our days.
A Clear Guidance – A Show by Farkas Varga
24 June – 25 July
This introductory show selects pieces from four, chronologically overlapping series executed by the young artist, but kept private until now. The central principle of the show is blindness as it manifests itself through the viewfineder of a camera and through multiple expositions of the same spectacle. Thus, the themes of the camera-shots get copied upon themselves which gives rise to a strange allegoric kind of vision.
Manual Focus – A Joint Show by Zsombor Barakonyi and Zbynek Sedlecky
24 June – 22 July
Acb Contemporary Arts Gallery
It is metropolitan scenes that come to life in the joint exhibition of Czech artist Zbynek Sedlecky and highly original exponent of the contemporary Hungarian scene, Zsombor Barakonyi. Their common metropolitan experiences are grasped by divergently original means. Barakonyi uses wooden boxes painted by blades, spraying, and rollers. The Czech artist who took part in the 2010 Liverpool Biannual is primarily moved by metropolitan architecture. His huge canvasses capture modern buildings and their interiors inhabited by faceless, anonymous city-dwellers – a testimony to the unfathomable quality of post-Socialist, and a depressing memory of Socialist city living.