SUMMARY– 2020/1

Béla Albertini: Hungarian photography history series, August 1919 – June 1941
Part seven

The article of Béla Albertini focuses on the analysis of the materials and authors of the 3rd artistic photo exhibition organised in the Museum of Applied Arts between 30 October and 15 November 1920. The article discusses the exhibitors in detail according to gender, religion, and age. The war ended, the Hungarian Soviet Republic collapsed; however, the last three decades of the 19th century represented an exceptional period of development in the history of both Budapest and the country. The name list of exhibitors and the exhibition material was composed as a resultant of all this. The study examines the background, the composition of exhibition participants from a photo history point of view, together with their role in the life of photography of the age and responses to the exhibition.

András Bán: Cleanliness is next to godliness
The article reviews the series of Katherina Roters titled Hungarian Cubes ranging from the personal motives of implementation through the method to interpretations of various levels. The study of András Bán also outlines the international context interacting with the work, including archetypes and theoretical considerations related to the picture type realised consistently in the series. The series itself is a starting point for many kinds of interpretations, and the study presents them abundantly.

György Cséka: Wild landscape
Few aspects could be found whereby Papillon – died 26 years ago – was not a deviant person. No institutions have been willing so far to present the photo series of Tamás Urbán, taken from him as a photographer and a friend of Papillon. Now the Capa Center has undertaken this. As summarized by György Cséka: “The significance of the work lies in the fact that it is more and less – at the same time – than photography, photo report, sociology, cultural anthropology, current-day history and history of the change of the regime, prison research, or perhaps the short history of Hungarian alternative (music / sub) culture.” In the study, the author also delineates some personality traits of Papillon based on the documents exhibited. The article clearly points out why it was important for Tamás Urbán – living in conditions of restricted freedom – to present the autonomy of this personality.

Gábor Ébli Public/space/conceptions. Photbased contemporary art from the Balázs-Dénes Collection
In the series on the position of photo-based contemporary art in private collections, we present this time a highly conceptual selection of works by a Budapest-based economist couple. Now in their early fifties, they have been acquiring art of this kind systematically for over a decade now, with their three children increasingly sharing their interest and with the collection opening up internationally now.

Zsuzsa Farkas: Hungarian private collectors – Interview with Károly Kincses
Károly Kincses builds and enriches his collection based on specific aspects. The purpose of the collection is to include a photo by each Hungarian photographer to serve the ultimate purpose, that is, the compilation of an encyclopaedia of photography as much as possible. The collection is rich in works originating from the territory of 19th–century Hungary. Still, it also includes, as an essential part, works by artists in emigration. For several reasons, the process of collection sometimes accelerated or halted; at present, it contains more than 100.00 pictures. As a specialist of museology, Zsuzsa Farkas compiled highly significant documentation on the authors, which also forms an integral part of the collection. The collection is of interest with good reason, and the study by Zsuzsa Farkas provides valuable insights to this.

Zoltán Fejér: Traits of the hand of the designer
Among others, Hungarian engineers also worked on the improvement of Kodak devices. The developments and patents of József Mihályi – who emigrated to the USA – appeared in the models Kodak Ektra, Medalist, Super Kodak Six-20, and Bantam Special. In this article, Zoltán Fejér presents the results – as implemented – of this famous designer of Kodak.

József Gaál: Gaining ground / loss of the body / János Palotai: György Tóth – Body spaces
The monography by János Palotai on György Tóth has been published recently. József Gaál introduces the reader to the oeuvre of György Tóth, primarily consisting of female nudes. The study places the photographer into an international context, presenting the analogy between the works of György Tóth and pictorial approaches, and also interprets the role of female bodies both from the existential and psychological points of view. It highlights the different roles of the photographer and the model, the spaces created by bodies and the intellectual contents appearing in the gestures of female bodies.

Photobooks. Interviews. I. / “This Hungarian hundred per cent reaches an international level” – Dezső Szabó: Darkroom
The book titled “Darkroom” by Dezső Szabó includes the four series produced by the photographer in the course of recent years. These series discuss both photography and media. Judit Gellér interviewed the artist about the book.

Bernadett Grászli: Luz&Sombra / “Catching sight of the shadow as the light.” The photo art of Juan Gyenes (1912- 1995)
Visitors of exhibitions in Hungary can rarely encounter the pictures of Juan Gyenes (János Gyenes). This is actually why it is fortunate that the Rómer Flóris Museum of Art and History in Győr organised an exhibition of the works of the artist who had lived and worked in Spain for fifty-five years. The reason for the presentation is also heartening. A corpus consisting of nearly 1,500 pieces was transferred to the museum from the sibling of Juan Gyenes who resided in Hungary. In connection with this, Bernadett Grászli summarizes the main stations of the artist’s career and presents the main pieces of the estate.

Anne Kotzan: Ludwig Windstosser – Photographic modernism after World War II
In the Federal Republic of Germany following World War II, some photographers – including Ludwig Windstosser – endeavoured to create state-of-the-art photography that would call into being a new pictorial world of photography setting out from the traditions of Bauhaus. The establishment of the photoform group and subjective photography is associated with the group led by Otto Steinert. In this context, the term subjective meant something free, personal and non-functional. An exhibition from the works of Ludwig Windstosser was arranged in Berlin in 2019. The article by Anne Kotzan introduces the reader to the oeuvre of the photographer starting from the 1950s.

Anna Wessely: Pictures of István Halas
István Halas is a particular figure of the Hungarian photographic scene since the ’70s. The text of Anna Wessely helps the reader to discover more accurately the oeuvre of Halas. In her writing, she analyses several works from different periods of the artist to demonstrate the similarities, the continuity of some elements and emphasizing changing factors of the approach of the photographer.