Let’s Hope for a Better Future! – New Work by Péter Hecker | Kind of Change – New Acquisitions 2009-2011 | SPACEMETAL – A Memorial Show of Gábor Horváth (1974–2008) | A Show by András Gál and Dirk Rathke | One-Man Show by Károly Királyfalvi
Erika Baglyas: Let’s Hope for a Better Future! – New Work by Péter Hecker
The painter envisages his future while busy doing his mandatory toil in the present.
God certainly takes His time but a metallic future is already around the corner if only by the name of information. What we find behind an elegant glass portal in Mozsár Street is rhythmic colour gymnastics. Péter Hecker certainly means business, and we want to find out how.
He has put on ten acrylic-on-canvas paintings that tell short stories about our present and future. The work after which the show has been named sends a pivotal message by depicting men wearing suits and ties as they are fed standard food in a sterile fast food setting. They are participants of a conference on the future of painting wearing the usual conference badges as they get immersed in the world of culture business.
Vanessa, the exhibition guide is a Buddhist with her arms folded across her chest, spiteful of communicating with the others (Information). On another painting by Hecker named Uncle Pali the Tight-Rope Walker the fat and bald protagonist, slightly drunk by the way, does his balancing act on a rope spread between tops of skyscrapers.
The next picture shows the ocean-liner Alibi as it runs aground and is about to sink. Nor does the show end there, because painter zombies have left their ateliers and are ready to fight with their painter rollers high up against the backdrop of some rich vegetation.
The popular magician Rezső Gács a.k.a. Rodolfo is only featured on a T-shirt in contrast to Dad who can fold up his ears (Dad Can Fold Up His Ears). Which pales when we consider future museum-goers capable of having fights with each other for better perspective (Visitors Spiked by Art to Fight it Out in the Museum). The weak end up laid out on the floor as the guards are helpless in controlling the upheaval caused by the suppressed longings of visitors.
This then is the kind of narrative one can expect to feast on at Hecker’s latest exhibition. Hecker’s style has its values as it has remained pretty constant over the decades. The general effect is highly decorative enlivened even more by small, hidden motifs or jocular titles, one-liners that are as much part of the picture as they are sarcastic comments on its message. His self-criticism invites the visitors that they, too, should practice self-criticism.
It is a sign of Hecker’s excellent sense of proportion that he ridicules the art business without extracting his own art beforehand. His paintings are critical rather like István Örkény’s ’one-minute stories’ were; he speaks the truth while pretending that it is something else that he does. This is why I am reminded of Örkény’s ’one-minute-story’ entitled Let’s Hope for a Better Future which ends with these words: „So, this is how we shall all live in the future. Meanwhile, we’ll just have to survive.”
Erika Deák Gallery
3 March – 2 April
Kind of Change – New Acquisitions 2009-2011
4 March – 15 May
Ludwig Museum Budapest – Contemporary Arts Museum
This is the second time for the Ludwig Museum to present its most recent acquisitions. In the spring of 2010 it presented several of its most recent acquisitions at its refurbished standing exhibition entitled ’Sentences Impossible to Misunderstand’. Most of its latest acquisitions are anchored in East-Central Europe’s recent past and/or its changing present with the issue of an artistic product determined by history in their focus.
SPACEMETAL – A Memorial Show of Gábor Horváth (1974–2008)
4 March – 26 March
Barcsay Hall of the Hungarian Academy of Art
Horváth’s tragically short oeuvre is presented here as a very productive one. His works have been shown not only in Hungary, but also in galleries of Vienna, Bratislava, Stuttgart, Berlin, Moscow and Rome. Besides doing painting while staying in various artists’ colonies he has also participated in various collective installation and video projects especially with the artists’ group named The Corporation. As well as producing oil-on-canvas works, he has also made paperworks many of which have incorporated such special materials as aluminum plates, silicon, and pigments.
A Show by András Gál and Dirk Rathke
3 March – 26 March
B55 Contemporary Gallery
András Gál is the Hungarian contemporary painter who has been most consistent in linking up with the international movement of monochrome painting. Proof of this is his presence at major international thematic exhibitions and also at one of the leading monochrome galleries, i.e. Bergner+Job, Mainz. He employs nothing but painterly means by presenting his colours quite separate from form. He also harks back to the metaphysical roots of East-Central European monochrome painting. Based in Berlin, Dirk Rathke belongs to a new generation of painters in the geometrical abstract tradition who approach art with fresh eyes.
One-Man Show by Károly Királyfalvi
3 March – 10 April
Polis Caffé Culturale – hybrid art&cafe
Being a versatile graphic artist and illustrator, Károly Királyfalvi mixes typographic means with popular imagery. Whether making books, posters, stickers or flyers, he is most prolific in prints, but he has worked on T-shirts, shoes, skateboards, all this coming from one of the best-known representatives of Hungarian Street Art.