Krisztián Sándor and his Trash Expressionism | Museums Facing 12 per cent Cuts | XII. Alps – Adria Graphic Biannual Exhibitions | A Show of Grantees of the László Moholy-Nagy and Lajos Kozma Grants | A Show by Prize-winners Anikó Basa and Kim Corbisier
Gábor Rieder: Krisztián Sándor and his Trash Expressionism
Inda Gallery has been inundated by totem carvings executed by a native shaman just back from an acquisition trip he had made to a metropolitan garbage disposal facility. Bits of rubbish, used shoes, cardboard boxes, torn pieces of blue jeans, divers’ footwear, cow’s skulls – all of this (and much more) splashed with oil paint of a thousand colours. Shocking stuff if ever there was one. One totem is composed of pieces of paper clipped and pasted upon wooden planks, there is a large, oval human face with glaring eyes and a gaping mouth painted with a wide brush. Its hair is pieces of electric cords complete with their plastic plugs. Another totem touts its thick, African lips made from the sole of a thrown-away boot while tufts of its hair are made of pieces of bent rubber insulation.
Needless to say, among the pieces of rubber soles, carton paper, and clips we are treated to some small-size oil paintings complete with the canvas and the frames but made impossible to make out by splashed paint and nails hit in at random. Thus, we are given to understand that those are not works executed by the magician of a Pacific island tribe. Another, much more plausible scenario is held up: yet again, we are faced with objects made by a contemporary European painter.
He is Krisztián Sándor by name, a painter who had achieved some fame with his exotic, many-coloured, narrative oil paintings over the years. The tropical cheer of those paintings did much to suppress the social statements hidden among the details. The young artist has recently made a leap: from the status of a contemporary „African naive painter” he seems to have stepped back in art history time to the status of a person supplying „archaic tribal aesthetics”. He has thrown away, or rather included by nailing them into his new assemblages, the popular, neo-Pop oil paintings he had made up till now. Experts apply only one term to the ancient, brutal instincts and archaic symbols appearing in this kind of art, i.e. expressionism. But such a term would itself be too old-fashioned in this case. There is the much more often-used and trendy term „trash”. Whatever Krisztián Sándor is doing today can best be described by this term.
Not that he is alone with what he is doing. With the optimism of the neo-Pop trend devastated by the financial crunch, we now have to make do with the trash-expressionism emerging from the underground world of Budapest’s dilapidated cafés and pubs. The new, straightforward, reckless, scavenging style of painting is rampant among the young artists locked out for the most part of the sterile contemporary art galleries. Drawing as it does on recycling design, metropolitan scavenging culture, and the aesthetics of dispatch-cyclists, Trash Art has its connections to ever more fashionable Street Art, and also to the comics characters growing out of the subconscious of Disney’s universe. Favourite haunts of Trash Art are inner city cafés and pubs whose walls are covered by graffiti, not to speak of such cult haunts as Roham (Assault) Gallery, Boulevard and Brezhnev. Prices are low, the beer diluted, the music glaring, and with many foreigners, the company is superb. A little like Montmartre in Paris around 1905…
Looking at the new assemblages of Krisztián Sándor, one is certain that Trash Expressionism is to gain ground even among some of the more well-off commercial galleries. The new barbarians are coming at full swing with their totems and full-blooded dreams.
22 February – 11 March
Museums Facing 12 per cent Cuts
Public museums in Hungary are to miss one-and-a-half months’ worth of their financial needs from now on. Out of the central HUF 250 bn budget cut the Ministry of National Resources (the ministry in charge of museums in Hungary) has to produce a cut of HUF 39 bn. Hungarian National Gallery will have HUF 81 mn less money to lean on, Ludwig Museum will have to think over its programs planned for abroad, the Museum of Fine Arts will put on no new exhibits this year. Public museums, having very little support to start with, will have even less with which to finance their basic operational costs.
XII. Alps – Adria Graphic Biannual Exhibitions
24 February – 26 March
Continuing a tradition of 20 years, the Biannual features works by Friuli, Slovenian, Hungarian, Styrian, and Burgenland artists, including up and coming ones. The idea of a Biannual was first thought up by Udine artists Vittorio Marangone and Giordano Merlo, and this is the first time that it is organised in a Hungarian venue.
A Show of Grantees of the László Moholy-Nagy and Lajos Kozma Grants
24 February – 3 April
Arts and Crafts Museum
This year the show is organised for the sixth time. Hungarian design is indebted to its young designers who are best suited to re-interpret some of the long-standing traditions and apply some of the latest technologies.
A Show by Prize-winners Anikó Basa and Kim Corbisier
23 February –
The two artists had won last year’s Friss (Fresh) 2010 special prizes with the KOGART Gallery. Anikó Basa graduated in 2010 from the Department of Painting at the Academy of Art but rather than using traditional materials like canvas and paints, she is first and foremost into installations. Belgian-born Kim Corbisier also graduated from the same institution and the same year and he prefers to paint mundane scenes known to everyone after photographs. He adds to his paintings not only his sensitive photographs and videos but also his skill to enact small theatrical scenes.