Krisztina Erdei

  • Hungary (b. 1978 in Szeged)
  • Currently in Budapest, Hungary.
  • Photographer presently working on her doctoral studies at Moholy-Nagy Univetsity of Art and Design. Krisztina Erdei graduated from the School of Philosophy and the School of Political Studies.

Repairformance Nr2

  • 2018
  • Video
  • 0 min, 40 sec

  • The Pesti Vigado, Budapest

  • 0
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    Repairformance | 2018

with Sanja Andjelković Re-enactment of the work of Julius Koller and Peter Ronai in Budapest and Novi Sad 1”32 sec In Budapest, if you meet with and talk to the artists, curators and other art professionals, it may surprise you, that the Hungarian art scene is in an extremely challenging position. Few years ago, the internationally observed scandals of the present governmental establishment attracted lot of media attention, when unfit or questionable representatives were appointed into leading specialized positions of the most significant state art institutions (Műcsarnok/Kunsthalle Budapest or Ludwig Museum – Museum of Contemporary Art, Budapest). As a result, a wave of demonstrations and protest campaigns has occurred on the Hungar- ian art scene. However, while the artists and activists succeeded to draw the attention on developments in the country thanks to (even artistically valuable) protest events, occupations or discussion forums, in the governmental cultural policy and the status quo of operation and directing of the institutions nothing changed. On the contrary, the situation has been getting gradually worse. The Hungarian Academy of Arts got an incredible privileged position and invaluable buildings also to work as the state’s ideological arm. As a sign of the increasing encroachment of Hungary’s right-wing government into the running of the country’s cultural institutions the academy started using the building of Vigadó, after 10 years of reconstruction and also two villas at Andrássy street. Officially the Hungarian Academy of Arts is a public body committed to national tasks concerning the arts – especially literature, music, fine art, applied art, design art, architec- ture, photography, film, performing art, folk art – as well as the analysis, support, education, national and international presentation and spreading of the arts together with the representation of Hungarian artists. But the reality is that the Academy represents only a small part of the contemporary art scene, because art cannot be existentially dependent only on one source of support. At the same time, this kind of reliance is common for all countries in our region and any of them may easily fall into similar situation. In Novi Sad on the other hand, if you meet and talk to the artists, curators and other art professionals, it may as well also surprise you that the feeling is alco not pessimism, which, again would be highly justified. With the change of the government so did the change within the institutions like The Museum of Contem- porary art and others occur. And it happened in the blink of an eye. Overnight. The wave of the demonstra- tions never occurred because of it, but mostly because of setting of the new order and ordeal and political positions within the Vojvodina national Tv and radio station. There were no public forums of concrete dis- cussions. There is a foundation (Novi Sad 2021) established not so long ago that lately gastlights the current attitude towards free speech and independent critical thinking. But on the other hand provides income for many artists nowadays. The government apparatus has been suppressing artists and many more with the promise or a better future. The solutions they bring are short lived because of the current establishment and position of Novi Sad being the Cultural Center of Europe in 2021 (after the 2021, the future is uncer- tain). Of course, there is a certain pressure to be lived up to and massive manufacturing of art that is not corresponding to the current political and economical pressures and ideas. We are not so far from Budapest or Hungary for that meter, both geographically and economically. The same foundation set up has been developed. To understand the consequences, it is important to ask ques- tions. But more important to understand that the source of income and distribution of art is going predomi- nantly from one source. So we are to ask the current currant whether this is good for the new cultural her- itage and developments in the field and how will this affect us? Censuring and gastlighting are the two new terms that need new cross examination. And urgent! Julius Koller predominantly played with the cultural context. Examined what the place of the arts in the neoavangarde stood within the current governmental structure. Introducing some new terms and throwing them to a different social context. Unlike the happen- ing the anti-happening suggested instead of actual action, a new point of subjective objectivity as he called it. They gave the space for the subjects and objects to reshape the already culturally inherited norms and understandings. Calling upon everyday situations to be transformed and integrated into an everyday oc- casions. Some would argue about the distinction between a silent protest or a work of art. Nevertheless, Koller was quite a revolutionary figure of that time. He was set on to transpond the message more so then to arrange a certain aesthetics. Anti-aesthetics, perhaps. Drawing a strain from the format of Kollers methodologies, we personally tried to appropriate the already existing anti happening to the political and cultural context nowadays. Our reenactment is based on the antiperformance of Péter Rónai and Julius Kollar happened in Nové Zám- ky. One of our videos was recorded next to the building of Vigadó, the other one was shot in front of the new headquarters of the MMA was established by joining the Secessionist Villa (Freund-villa) on the corner of the former headquarters of Hungarian Association of Journalists (Shanzer-villa) and Bajza utca. It’s also an interesting gesture to kick out the advocacy of the journalists and give the place for the ideological arm of the state. We changed the text (title) a bit, we use the word: repairformance, because we work in pair and also because we would like to suggest to change the position of Hungarian Academy of Arts and keep the cultural scene shared. Shared democratic culture is difficult. There are no shortcuts. But it is incredibly rewarding.