At the invitation of Ludwig Múzeum Budapest, Künstlerhaus, Halle für Kunst & Medien (KM– Graz) presents the publication „Abstract Hungary,” recently published by Sternberg Press (Berlin). Editor and Künstlerhaus director Sandro Droschl will be discussing with the authors Dávid Fehér, Áron Fenyvesi, Mónika Zsikla and the artist Ákos Ezer the penchant for abstraction when it comes to complex social conditions, a drive to effect change, and a resilience of analysis and representation, which are all characteristic of Hungary’s art scene since the 1960s until today, and especially of its “abstract artists.” The subject of this talk will also involve today’s conditions and opportunities for the practice of Hungarian artists, curators, and critics.
The present exhibition catalogue expands two eponymous projects at Künstlerhaus, seeking to consolidate the abstracted view of Hungary. With a sweeping selection of twenty-five Hungarian artists, the venue presented the group exhibition “Abstract Hungary” in 2017, which was devoted to methods of abstraction of varying dialogical nature. The exhibition represented a more broad narrative blueprint of the much discussed term “abstraction” and showed both established and aspiring artistic positions, some of which were exhibited there in Austria for the first time. The abstracted visual language of Hungarian artists was also being addressed by the Künstlerhaus in 2019 in the solo exhibition “Ábstract Hungary” by Ákos Ezer, a painter who thematically processes the present-day reality of his home country. With bodies, seemingly distorted by strange movements, the artist speaks in an abstracted and ironical way of the relation between the individual and society.