Contemporaries: Collectors and Artists – Hungarian and International Art from Private Collections in Hungary, 2010–2014

New Budapest Gallery

1093 Budapest, Fővám tér 11–12., (Bálna Budapest)

19 December 2014 – 1 March 2015

Curators:

Gábor ANDRÁSI | Tamás TÖRÖK TÖRÖK | Ágnes KONKOLY | Zsuzsanna SZEGEDY-MASZÁK

Exhibiting artists:

Zoltán Ádám | Ádám Albert | Teodora Axente | Márton Barabás | Zsombor Barakonyi | András b. Baranyai | Róbert Batykó | Ervin Békési | Emese Benczúr | Kata Bereczki | András Bernát | Krisztina Bognár | János Borsos | Róbert Borsos | Péter Botos | Imre Bukta | József Bullás | Márta Czene | Ákos Czigány | István Csákány | Szilárd Cseke | Balázs Csepregi | Zsuzsi Csiszér | Lajos Csontó | Attila Csörgő | Eszter Csurka | drMáriás | Sári Ember | Gábor Erdélyi | Marcell Esterházy | János Fajó | Dénes Farkas László Fehér | István Felsmann László feLugossy | János Fodor | Mark Fridvalszki | József Gaál | Áron Galambos | György Gáspár | Pál Gerber | Gábor Gerhes | Ingo Glass | Hans-Jörg Glattfelder | Kinga Hajdú | András Halász | Péter Tamás Halász | Péter Hecker | Levente Herman | Katalin Hetey | Tibor Horváth | Tibor Iski Kocsis | Veronika Jakatics-Szabó | Katalin Káldi | László Karácsonyi | Tamás Kárpáti | Tamás Kaszás | György Kemény | Gábor Király | Csaba Kis Róka | Márta Kiss | Little Warsaw | Károly Klimó | Ádám Kokesch | Tamás Komoróczky | János Korodi | Luca Korodi | Endre Koronczi | János Kósa | Eva Kotátková | Hans Kotter | Alida Kovács | Adrián Kupcsik | Erik van Lieshout | Lilla Lőrinc | Ilona Lovas | Éva Magyarósi | Goshka Macuga | Bence Marafkó | Martin Henrik | Zsolt Marton | Erik Mátrai | Dóra Maurer | Lóránt Méhes | Mladen Miljanovic | Péter Molnár | Vera Molnár | Justin Mortimer | Kriszta Nagy | Csaba Nemes | Márton Nemes | Hajnal Némeeth| Melitta Németh | Richard Orosz | László Ottó | Gábor Ősz | Vitaly Pushnitsky | Eszter Radák | Márk Radics | Randomroutines | Gábor Roskó | Eva Schlegel | László Seres | István Sinkó | Ede Sinkovics | Eszter Sipos | Société Réaliste | Tamás Soós | Daniel Spoerri | Attila Stark | Róbert Swierkiewicz | Ákos Szabó | Ottó Szabó | SZAF | Péter Szalay | Péter Szarka | Zoltán Szegedy-Maszák | Tamás Szigeti | Kamilla Szíj | Tamás Szikora | János Szirtes | Attila Szűcs | Levente Szűcs | Claudia Tamási | Tara Sorin | Hajnalka Tarr | Thorsten Ridell | Alexander Tinei | Gábor Tóth aka tgnoise | Kata Tranker | Csaba Uglár | Péter Ujházi | Róbert Várady | Tímea Várhelyi | Gyula Várnai | Ágnes Verebics | Katalin Verebics | Kati Vilim | Erzsébet Vojnich | Erwin Wurm | Sándor Zoltán | Ildikó Zsemlye

The acquisition of contemporary works of art by private individuals and the private collections that are created as a result of these initiatives can be seen as complex economic and social undertakings.

From an economic perspective, the use of private capital to create and build collections – in the case of contemporary works – is currently undergoing a multifaceted transformation. From the perspective of the macro-economy and, within it, the art sector – primarily artists and commercial galleries – it emerges as a demand that invigorates the arts and inspires supply; from the perspective of the collector, it may prove a prudent investment or an undertaking with a risky outcome (either remunerative only in the long-term or, in a bad case scenario, never).

From the perspective of society as a whole, collectors and collections that are accessible to the public play a conducive role in stimulating the creation, selection and preservation of cultural-artistic products, and also help further familiarization with and recognition of these works.

Due to the current protracted financial and societal crisis, it is particularly important to assume this economic and social role. Presently, in the midst of unfavourable circumstances in Hungary from the perspective of contemporary art, for-profit and non-profit private initiatives share in the public duties by supporting the creation and promotion of works of art. Ideally, the activity of the collectors is inseparable from the work of public art institutions. The collaboration of these two complementary domains is inevitable – the current exhibition at the New Budapest Gallery is an example of one such partnership.

The motif of personal involvement and investment, so often emphasized by collectors, also has a social implication: namely, it draws attention to the passionate interest in and appreciation of works of art and the acquaintances and often friendships that come into being between artists and collectors, who during the workweek are active in entirely different spheres of life.

Our exhibition first and foremost calls attention to the indispensable economic roles and the valuable social roles played by collectors of contemporary art in Hungary. The considerations on which the selection was based therefore deviate from customary curatorial exhibitions. The works here have been chosen not to confirm some previously formulated theoretical issue. Rather – based on works strictly from the period between 2010 and 2014 – the exhibition seeks to produce a snapshot of the acquisitions of contemporary works by collectors in Hungary. For the visitor, this snapshot will provide the outlines of various definitions of contemporary art that are inherent in each collection, while also illustrating the diversity of their orientations: whether it be an interest in Hungarian or international art or a preference for certain genres and mediums, not to mention the value judgements applied to the works of individual artists.

We were not intent on influencing, by providing some kind of distinguished “external” perspective, the revealing picture with which we were presented – a picture already structured by the aforementioned factors – when viewing the Hungarian and international works created over the course of the last five years. Namely, we regard the aspect of investment and patronage as equally legitimate and of equal public interest; collections stylistically homogenous or divergent; collections concentrating exclusively on Hungarian or international contemporary art; adherence to or rejection of current trends; collections cultivated with the assistance of experts or collections based entirely on independent choices.

When surveying works created between 2010 and 2014 that were made available to us, we strove to organize an exhibition of contemporary art that would simultaneously reflect the character and inherent connections of some of the collections, selecting in some cases uniquely characteristic pieces with which to demonstrate parallels and divergences, but also providing as comprehensive and informative picture of contemporary art as possible, including from the perspective of genres. Due to the disparate scale of acquisitions, the works selected for this exhibition are not displayed according to the individual collections, but rather are organized according to a logic suggested by the works themselves.

There are well-known, important collections which – much to our regret – are not represented in the exhibition: either the owners of the collections failed to respond to our inquiry or, for understandable reasons, they declined our request to participate. In some cases, a given collection did not include any works from the time frame. But it is also possible, of course, that there were significant collections that we failed to notice.

This exhibition which consists of works found in 38 Hungarian private collections (for reasons mentioned above, by no means with any pretension of comprehensiveness) may be a point of departure or a source of inspiration for future curatorial exhibitions that wish to focus on certain specific issues or subjects. And, last but not least, the current exhibition may kindle interest in contemporary art and the establishment of new collections.

Contemporaries: Collectors and Artists – Hungarian and International Art from Private Collections in Hungary, 2010–2014 | Photos: József Rosta

Collections:

Collection of Árpád Balázs and Andrea Dénes, Budapest
Collection of Dr. Imre Balogh
Barabás Collection
Péter Barta Collection
Bohem Art Hotel Collection
Böhm Collection, Germany
Collection of László Fehér
Feuer – Plichta Collection
Collection of the First Hungarian Spectacle Repository
Gerendai Collection
Gerő Collection, Budapest
Horváth Collection
Gábor Hunya Collection
Insurart Collection
Irokéz Collection
Jurecskó-Kishonthy Collection
Korda – Földényi Collection
Kozák – Stomp Collection
Kozma – kArton Collection
K. Petrys Collection
Ludman – Gyuricskó Collection
Collection of Levente Málnay B.
Modern Art Gallery – Vass Collection
Mihály Molnár Collection
NaCollection
Szöllősi-Nagy – Nemes Collection
nemethcollection
Pálfi Collection
Rechnitzer Collection
Collection of Péter Rimár
Collection of Zsolt Somlói and Katalin Spengler
Szalóky Collection
Collection of Péter Szép
Szűcs Collection
Collection of Tamás Szűcs
Collection of Árpád Tóth
Collection of Csaba Tóth
Völgyi – Skonda Contemporary Art Collection

Acknowledgements:

István STEFFANITS | Ferenc ELN | Sándor MURÁNYI | Ernő SZÁZ | Anna VERES | János VÍGH | Cecília GÁSPÁR

Special thanks to KATALIN SPANGLIER.