Disciples of Dora Maurer | Art exhibition | 2021

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Art exhibition 2021


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The Hungarian Cultural Centre London is proud to produce and present the first group exhibition dedicated to the work of eight emerging Hungarian artists taught by the iconic Hungarian artist, Dóra Maurer. The exhibition will open at the Hungarian Embassy in London on the 29th of June followed by presentations in different London locations including local galleries and cultural institutions in the autumn. Dóra Maurer (b. 1937, Budapest) is one of the most sought-after living Hungarian artists. She has been active for over five decades, working in almost every medium, including film, sculpture, photography, painting, and performance. The largest UK exhibition of this influential artist, teacher and curator was presented by Tate Modern between 5 August 2019 and 24 January 2021, sponsored by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Hungary.

in Salzburg. Today, she is still an active member of the Hungarian Doctoral Council. What makes a great artist an inspiring teacher? For Maurer, it is her partnership approach, which is just as diverse, rich, and unique as her artistic career. She prefers shifting creative attitudes to frontal lectures and treating her students like equal partners, initiating discussion and raising the right questions. Dóra Maurer is a firm believer in sharing best practices, experience, and international trends while encouraging her disciples to explore various movements, create art in different styles, and use multiple mediums. The exhibition Disciples of Dóra Maurer aims to present the next generation of great Hungarian artists and the experience of being inspired by an engaged teacher and famous visual artist. Eight of her students displayed in this exhibition represent different generations and styles. Still, they share one thing: at a certain point in their lives, Dóra Maurer’s unique approach to teaching influenced them, and they are very proud of that.

As a professor, Dóra Maurer shaped and influenced generations of artists from the 1970s to this day at the most prestigious institutions in Hungary and abroad. Between 1987 and 1991, she was a guest professor teaching Visual Experiments at the College of Applied Arts in Budapest (today Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design). 1990 finds her at the Hungarian Academy of Fine Arts as a LIST OF ARTISTS: senior lecturer at the Painting Faculty. Mária CHILF | Márton CSERNY | Attila CSÖRGŐ | Tamás Additionally, from 1998 she taught at the University of Pécs JOVÁNOVICS | Barbara NAGY | Zoltán SZEGEDY-MASZÁK | and from 1999 at the Internationale Sommerakademie András WOLSKY | András ZALAVÁRI |

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It is my great pleasure to inaugurate this pioneering exhibition to all of you, where we have brought together a selection of the most remarkable artworks of Dóra Maurer’s disciples. The successful opening of the exhibition is a result of cooperation between many partners, including the Hungarian Cultural Centre London, Art Market Budapest, Edge Communications, David Kovats Gallery, Hoxton 253 Art Project Space and of course the Embassy of Hungary in London. It is gratifying to see that Tate Modern has played a significant role in supporting the Hungarian contemporary heritage by hosting the influential Dóra Maurer’s exhibition for one and a half years as well as the promotion of cultural exchanges with foreign countries. It was a really exciting and important opportunity for Hungary’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade to become the main sponsor of that exhibition.

This exhibition is intended to give all the visitors a better understanding of the brilliance of Dora Maurer as a teacher and to find international recognition for her superb students who have gone on to make their mark on Hungarian contemporary art. I would especially like to thank Máté Vincze, the director of the Hungarian Cultural Centre London, Attila Ledényi, the founder of Art Market Budapest, the galleries for being gracious hosts of the event, as well as all the colleagues for their support of the project; without their contribution and hard work, the exhibition would not have been made possible. Most importantly, I would like to convey my appreciation to every artist for adding a new dimension to our memory landscape and inspiring us in our search for the signs of value, beauty, and wisdom in our world.

In this special centenary year of the establishment of the dr. Ferenc Kumin diplomatic relations between our countries, Hungary is Ambassador of Hungary to the Court of St. James’s honoured to look back over the last 100 years to highlight the special ties that bind us together with the United Kingdom. We give our warmest gratitude to the UK, which has a proud history of welcoming diverse and international art into its already rich art scene.


I started being a fan of her works well before Art Market Budapest was founded over ten years ago. And although I never had any doubt that Dóra Maurer was one of the greatest living artists in Hungary, I didn’t think that she was going to have such a strong impact on the professional career of pretty much every one of us who have been trying to promote Eastern European art on the global art scene.

No surprise that one of the most popular side events of Art Market Budapest was an artist talk with Dóra Maurer in 2017 and an exclusive viewing of an exhibition featuring her early works presented in the historic building of the Hungarian Academy of Fine Arts, where she actually studied between 1955-61 and returned some 30 years later as a teacher.

I tend to believe that if her life-work as an artist was predestined to introduce Hungary to the World as home to some One of the main challenges we had to face when establish- amazing artistic talents, her career as an educator was ing Art Market Budapest in 2011 was that Budapest was a meant to make sure that the World is reminded of that from nearly invisible spot on the global art map, a place where time to time. a major international contemporary art event just simply didn’t seem to make sense. The exhibition Disciples of Dóra Maurer is a wonderful effort to enforce the latter, while it is also a tribute to one of the But ever since she appeared on the cover of ArtReview with greatest living artists and art educators of our time. the title Hungary’s best kept secret in 2012, one of Eastern Europe’s leading artist geniuses has been securing Attila Ledényi a firm position on the global market, and Dóra Maurer’s Founder, Director / Art Market Budapest artistic career has largely contributed to making Central and Eastern Europe widely known as a precious source of amazing cultural values and excellent contemporary artistic accomplishment. And it is partly due to this that Art Market Budapest has grown to become Central and Eastern Europe’s internationally most appreciated contemporary art fair and one of Europe’s recognized international art events, and why Budapest is becoming an increasingly attractive meeting place for artlovers.

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Mária CHILF (1966) Lives and works in Budapest. Studied painting and intermedia at the Hungarian University of Fine Arts, later studied in Berlin and completed her doctorate in Budapest. In addition to the Ludwig Museum, her works are included in the collections of the Hungarian National Gallery, the Frauenmuseum in Bonn, the Akademie Schloss Solitude in Stuttgart and the Câmara Municipal in Lisbon. ‘Anything could fit into Dóra’s interdisciplinary painting classes… Her openness welcomed everything from classical to digital art. She let us work freely and tried to help us in whatever we were occupied with. Her spirit, directness and helpfulness meant she was close to us personally as well. Later, when I was a more established artist, she asked me to be her assistant lecturer, and I have been teaching to this day. Now as a teacher, I also believe in diversity. My goal is to create a similarly inspiring, free atmosphere to create in.’


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András WOLSKY (1969) Lives and works in Budapest. He studied intermedia, painting and graphic art, and postgraduate painting at the Hungarian University of Fine Arts. He has won the “Artist in residence” scholarship at the Hungarian Institute in Paris and the International Sommerakademie für Bildende Kunst in Salzburg, among others. He is a member of the National Association of Hungarian Artists, the Studio of Young Artists’ Association and the Open Structures Art Society. ‘Dóra Maurer admitted me to her painting class at the Hungarian University of Fine Arts in 1991. I graduated in 1996 and then I went on to complete postgraduate painting with Dóra as my master in 1998. In the 25 years since my graduation, she and I have had a direct and creative relationship. We have had many joint projects, especially in the Open Structures Art Society (OSAS) led by Dóra which has continuously organised international geometric-concrete exhibitions at the Vasarely Museum in Budapest since its foundation. I have been a member of OSAS since 2013.’


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Márton CSERNY (1970) Lives and works in Budapest. He attended the Secondary School of Visual Arts, then in 1997 graduated from the Hungarian University of Fine Arts with a degree in painting. Since 1987 he has taken part in several group exhibitions in Budapest, Bratislava, Szentendre, Pécs, Zsennye and Nuremberg. Most recently, he participated in the Artpool P60 performance. ‘What our master, Dóra Maurer said at the various technical courses acted as the definition of art to us, her disciples. Painting was not the goal, only a classic projection of the series I studied and made: photograms, my mobile sculptures, motion pictures, music, conceptual constructions, printing cylinders, stencilage. “Tiny rhythmic divergences detected in the observation of different things create the work” - one does not have to struggle to find one’s own style, as is taught in more classical training, instead it is the result of an observational process. So, as a disciple of Maurer, the observation of interfering accidental things, the creation of rhythmic series of concepts, gave special stability to being an artist.’



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Barbara NAGY (1976) Lives in Szentendre and works at the New Artists’ Colony. She graduated from the Hungarian University of Fine Arts, where she also completed her doctorate. She is a member of the Open Structures Art Society, the Studio of Young Artists’ Association, the Vajda Lajos Studio Cultural Association and the National Association of Hungarian Artists. Her works can be found in the collections of the Gáyor-Maurer Archive, the Paks Gallery and Raiffeisen Bank collection, among others. ‘From Dóra I learned acceptance, and to open my thinking in all directions. She accepted anything I did but only if I could justify my work. Why did I do it the way I did? We needed to be able to talk and write about our work. It is this systematic thinking, sensitive attitude in all directions, and thinking in terms of images that has defined our relationship both then and now.’


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Tamás JOVÁNOVICS (1974) Born in Budapest, today he lives and works in Italy. In addition to the Hungarian University of Fine Arts, he studied in Paris and Provence. His masters: Gábor Nagy, Tamás St.Auby, Dóra Maurer, Michel Guérin. His works have been exhibited in Hungary, Italy, France, Switzerland, Belgium and Germany. In the UK, he had two solo shows, ’Magnificent Coincidence’ in Patrick Heide Contemporary, London with Károly Keserü in 2011 and ’Back and Forth between Architecture – Art – Architecture’ at the Hungarian Cultural Centre London in 2009. ‘I did not go to Dóra’s class at the Hungarian University of Fine Arts. However, when I was working on my double DLA degree, I asked her to be my tutor in Budapest (the philosopher Michel Guérin was my tutor in Aix en Provence). At the time, I was mostly creating anamorphosis-inclined paintings on corner surfaces and I was a bit afraid that Dóra would not easily accept that I’m very much interested in the illusionistic aspect of painting. Luckily, I was wrong because as it turns out, Dóra accepts everything which is playful. Since 2004, I have been living abroad mostly, changing countries every now and then. The thing connecting me with Hungary apart from my family was Dóra’s constant invitations to exhibitions. Looking back, I am still amazed how she selected the list of artists for exhibitions without snobbery, always focusing solely on the topic, the theme, and not on how big their name might be in the profession. Whenever I would come home, I would visit her apartment studio, where we always had good conversations and I often borrowed books and catalogues. Here I must come clean - I have not returned one of the most wonderful things she has ever gave me: ‘Die Ecke The Corner Le Coin - Hoffman Galerie, 1986’. Please don’t tell her, but Dóra, if you read this yourself, I will of course bring it back and pay the interest. At least we’ll meet again.’



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András ZALAVÁRI (1986) Born in Székesfehérvár, today he lives and works in Budapest. He is a photo and video artist who graduated from the Hungarian University of Fine Arts. In recent years, his works have been exhibited in Hungary, Austria, Germany and Italy. ‘I was familiar with some of Dóra Maurer’s works when I went to university. I first came across her early video works at a Balázs Béla Studio (BBS) exhibition at the Kunsthalle in Budapest and it had a huge effect on me. I did not attend Dóra Maurer’s class at university. She pays a lot of attention to the work of other young artists, which is how she found me and invited me to the Ornament – Seriality exhibition of the Open Structures Art Society (OSAS). After that, I regularly participated at OSAS exhibitions. When we talked, it was obvious that she understands very well what my exhibited works are about, even the layers that require a special way of thinking. That’s why I asked her to be my advisor for my DLA research and I’m delighted that she has accepted.


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Zoltán SZEGEDY-MASZÁK (1969) Lives and works in Budapest. Graduated from the Hungarian University of Fine Arts with a degree in painting and then with a degree in intermedia. Since 2011, he has also been involved in university life as a teacher in the Intermedia Department. He is an internationally known intermedia artist using image and media theory as a starting point, creating significant new virtual/computer realities. After his initial internet projects, Cryptogram (1995-97) based on cryptography, and DeMedusator (1998-99), he designed a number of interfaces for interactive works (position-tracking torch, chrome steel mug “radiating” anamorphic images, handheld artificial eye.) In 2003, he was nominated for the Nam June Paik Award. ‘I can confidently say that I learned the most from Dóra Maurer about how to relate to art, the affirmation of life and joy, humanity, and – and when it comes to art, mischief against the canon. For example, at the end of the 20th century, what an impertinence it might have been to talk about art giving joy, not only wisdom or new truth that would otherwise be hard to express. Obviously, it is impossible to express in just a few sentences the liberating expansiveness of this idea, which argued with the concept of empty retinal entertainment that developed in the wake of Duchamp (mis)interpretations. Instead of the reasoning, one should consider and take in any piece of Dóra Maurer’s works as it demonstrates that the richness of thoughts does not exclude, what’s more, it requires delight. This is also something I have learned from Dóra, among countless other things - and anyone who, even if they are not lucky enough to know Dóra, or to work with her, can experience that art is a joyful, entertaining science through observing her paintings.


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Attila CSÖRGŐ (1965) Born in Budapest, now lives in Germany. He studied painting and intermedia at the Hungarian University of Fine Arts, and in 1993 he was a student at the Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten in Amsterdam. He received the Smohay Prize in 1998 and the Munkácsy Prize in 2001. In addition to his numerous solo and group exhibitions, he took part in the 22nd São Paulo Biennale in 1994 and at the XLVIII. Venice Biennale. The artist has presented the following solo exhibitions in the UK: 2019, Collisions and Missing Parts (with Vadim Fishkin), Hollybush Gardens, London, UK, 2004, Platonic love, Kettles Yard, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK Group exhibitions in the UK include: 2010, What Happens if?, Storey Gallery, Lancaster, UK, 2002, The eye of the beholder, Dundee Contemporary Arts, Dundee, UK, 1996, Computer World, The Tannery, London, UK. I had met Dóra shortly before she started to teach at the University of Fine Arts. At the time, she led a course titled “audio-visual practices” at the College of Applied Arts in Budapest and a few of us from the University of Fine Arts applied to participate in her classes. We were curious because in our program there was nothing remotely like this course. I was captivated by the atmosphere that Dóra created: She was both encouraging and collegial, playful, and focused at the task at hand. She was more invested in the fruitful process of experimentation, than the realization of the project itself.


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Disciples of Dóra Maurer Art exhibition 2021 Publisher: Máté Vincze, Attila Ledényi Organiser: Hungarian Cultural Centre London, EDGE Communications Programme manager, Curator, Editor: Lilla Boros, Ildikó Pál Graphic Design: Balázs Csizik Translation: Johanna Ács Printing: Quarts Studio Special thanks to András Wolsky and Dávid Kováts for their contribution. This programme is kindly supported by the Hungarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade and the National Cultural Fund of Hungary.