SUMMARY – 2013/4.

Vol. 2013/4 of Fotóművészet begins with an interview with photo artist Magdolna Vékás made by Sándor Bacskai: “It has never had any influence on me if criticism was addressed to my photos made by handicraft technology, on the other hand nor do I know what to do with it if a picture is thought a priori good just because it is cyanotype or chromotype. Certainly not: if a picture is bad, there is no procedure that would make it better. The fine (right) procedure is used not for its own sake, but because it helps interpret the picture. I have delight in others’ photography if the picture is good, irrespective of being a nature, a press or a commercial photo; I can’t really understand those who keep ranking artistic forms.”

In György Tóth’s profane iconostasis János Palotai writes: “According to György Tóth modern art does not exist without a kind of relationship, importing the old does have a role in its pulsation. This way the tripartite configuration similar to the old religious iconography is comprehensible: the triptychs mapped the theological programme, the world interpretation by the triad restrictions of creation, temptation and expulsion. In this history of agony of present days made between 2008 and 2012 the Calvary of the creator is also included…”

At a jointly organised exhibition in October 2013 the Magyar Fotográfusok Háza (House of Hungarian Photographers), the Mai Manó Ház and the Lausanne Musée de l’Elysée presented a collection selected from the photo collection of Howard Greenberg gallery owner in New York. Two authors of Fotóművészet report on the event: Gábor Pfisztner made an interview with Greenberg coming to the opening ceremony in Budapest. In Reviewing the history of photography György Cséka reports on the development of the picture collection and the exhibition in Budapest.

Rita Somosi visited the photo exhibitions in the Budapest Institut Français (French Institute). “Exhibitions in recent time bear witness to a well discernible line: this is the stressed presence of contemporary photography. Exhibitions like the Photo programs of ballet-dancer and choreographer József Nagy and Marseille. Memories from the opposite bank of Carolle Benitah coming from the world of fashion are only two of the events in the last two months which demonstrate very well a growing importance of photography in the institution’s program.” she writes.

Károly Grozdits reports on the exhibition “Present continuous V. VI. VII. (three in one): “The exhibition taking up the whole 1st floor of Mai Manó Ház, and lining up a dozen of young photographers – despite its diverging creator objectives – is so much unique and complete, that the virtual and real sense of the tripartite configuration (Reality Codes, Observations, Relations) cannot be understood but from the three vol. catalogue published for the exhibition… The exhibition’s fullness – probably a bit depressing at first sight – might seem crowdedness and it would unfold slowly, after several darting at and stepping back, concentrating on the dialogue of photographs. ”Presented photographers are Róbert László Bácsi, Sári Ember, Viola Fátyol, Ildi Hermann, Béla Dóka, Krisztina Erdei, Zsolt Fekete, Gábor Arion Kudász, Gáspár Riskó, Lili Zoé Érmezei.

In the Aesthetics of inter-resistance András Bán reviews Bálint Szombathy’s book – Town signs: “Szombathy’s anthology is divided into six sections: Frames, Tearing, Plate marks, Repainting, Wall paintings, Wire forms. There are dozens of photos per sections, in chronological order black-and-whites then colour photos, handled as individual works through their layout. The presentation of the pictures is simple. They are precise and committed to the topic. They are concentrated to the observed, rather than to the environment. Therefore nor from the secondary picture elements can be stated the time and place of the making (of the photo).”

In Our pioneers and the international market Mihály Surányi director of the Nessim Gallery analyses the relationship between a photographer generation and the antiquities market: “The generation emerging in the years of the Socialist regime had the least opportunity to join the international photographic circles and to experience its effects in Hungary… Paradoxically, besides that they all had a tremendously strong desire to be able to watch the contemporary international trends, that their knowledge, expertise be up-to-date and wide, to be able to formulate their works in the most possible authentic way, yet they pursued the most possible Hungarian photography. What they implemented it was necessarily distanced from the ordinary, and it tended towards something deemed to be universal.”

In The embryo state of the picture, its being conceived, its bearing and giving birth to it Ferenc Markovics is talking about producing a portrait: “I have always taken notice of it if interest in and affection for a spiral line emerged in others’ works. For example: for long and many times I have admired the prolific poetical visions of Ferenc Juhász, it has fascinated me how he was able to paint lavish pictures with words. I have tried to imagine what he would have been able to do with a space of the Sistine Chapel dimensions, if he could have filled it up with word-paintings.”

In Space-picture-science Gábor Pfisztner comments on Jörg Sasse’s exhibition in Frankfurt and on Candida Höfer’s in Düsseldorf: Although not at the same time, yet both photo artists studied under Becher at the faculty of photographing at the Academy of Arts in Düsseldorf. Nevertheless, their names come up less frequently than those of Thomas Ruff, Thomas Struth or Andreas Grusky whose names are mentioned sometimes together and at the same time. Probably their works are less spectacular, less amusing, it is less  easy to find the way from their pictures to the topical and/or fashionable picture-theoretical, art-theoretical or culture-anthropological discussions or polemics, it is more difficult to verbalize what has  been seen, to define by unambiguous notions, how one ought to dispose to their works.”

The author of “Saving family photos after the earthquake and the  tsunami in 2011 in Japan” is Yoko Shiraiwa the only photo restorer in Japan: “The value of photographs has changed and has been reinterpreted in the eyes of many of us following the catastrophe. People consider photos to be more precious than just a digital data carrier. Although the pictures in question used to be personal belongings, by now different values are attributed to them, since they have survived the tragedy. The photo made by someone has become a souvenir of another one, and all together they have become part of the collective memory of society.”

The subject of Zoltán Fejér’s article on history of photo-technology is a 35 mm double focusing hood, SLR camera with interchangeable lens, the Contaflex: This assertion might seem exaggerated at first sight, the Contaflex camera which had been designed by the Dresdener Zeiss Ikon, and was manufactured in series in the mid-thirties, can be said to be rather few but unique device in its kind, in the history of photo-technology.”

New Albums on Péter Tímár’s Bookshelf: Károly Hemző: Homage to the champion; András Balla: Refuge; Gergely Szatmári: American idler; Movement edited by László Beke, András Németh and Gabriella Vincze); Susan Bright: Art Photography Now.