Focus Ungarn 1988 – 2013


Bak Imre | Bartl József | Bukta Imre | Fehér László | Felsmann István | Hencze Tamás | Klimó Károly | Mulasics László | Pinczehely Sándor | Soós Nóra | Trombitás Tamás

When painting was celebrating a new revival internationally in the 1980s, the art market in Hungary was also registering a new painting boom.
With regard to a nationally deep-rooted art tradition three trends in this New Sensibility emerged from the 1980s onwards: a neo-expressive movement, a figurative neo-mannerism and the post-geometric, which, following on from Art Deco, the Vienna Secession and Constructivism was a clear affirmation of the central European tradition.

The "Focus Hungary" exhibition in Kitzbühel shows works from the Gaudens Pedit Collection as well as recent works by the artists mentioned and positions of contemporary art production, and is designed to give an overview of the art produced in this central European country between 1988 and the present day.

The works of Imre Bak are form-wise stringently placed, high-precision compositions. Bak is considered one of Hungary’s most prestigious representatives of hard-edge painting. Similarly associated with post-geometric art are the works of Tamás Trombitás. His abstract formal structures with their historical, architectural and cultural prototypes were developed as a symbolic form vocabulary. Károly Klimó, László Fehér and Tamás Hencze represent an expressive art style of painting in the 1980s in Hungary. Whilst Klimó’s pictorial world comprises abstract, expressionist images which, in typical Informel manner, have art appear as the end product in a painting process, Fehérs artwork is associated with the figurative. Old family photos are translated into painted images, stylised with reduced colour.  Hencze’s monumental action paintings occupy a sophisticated position in that they are works showing calligraphic forms applied using a template. A hallmark and all trace of spontaneity – characteristic of an expressive painting style – are eliminated in his works. Representing the figurative neo-mannerism school is Imre Bukta. Figurative and graphic motifs, discovered partly in magazines, among others, and outlining the topics of agriculture and alienation from nature, are woven together to a melancholic vision.
Not all the artists showing their works can be associated so unequivocally with a certain style. The works of József Bartl, which get their inspiration from popular art, and László Mulasics’s wax works, which emphasise the sensual characteristics of the materials, lie between a post-geometric and figurative-neo-mannerist style. The works of Sándor Pinczehelyi are expressive on the one hand, and on the other figurative-mannerist too. He brings together  in pictorially new contexts emblems and sublime symbols that frequently have political connotations.
Typical of the painting of Nóra Soós is the translucent overlapping of contour scenarios in bright, strong colours, with the banality of everyday life and its situations as her theme. István Felsmann employs art-unrelated materials of everyday life, takes LEGO bricks and arranges them into object images. Within the framework of the exhibition the works of Nóra Soós and István Felsmann build the most ostensible bridge to the present time.

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1 March, 7 p.m.
Opening speech:  S. E. Dr. BALÁZS CSUDAY, Ambassador, Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Vienna.

The exhibition runs until 18 May, 2013 and is open to the public during the opening hours or by appointment.

  • Pinczehely Sándor, SPARTAKIADE II, 1989, oil on canvas, 2 pieces, á 200 x 140 cm