City guide

“My Neighborhood”: see retro Budapest photos up to 100 years old

Photo : Az én környékem
“My Neighborhood”: see retro Budapest photos up to 100 years old

On Friday, Projekt Gallery opens a new exhibit presenting stunning pictures of bygone downtown Budapest, enhanced through the personal experiences portrayed. At the display, welcoming the public beginning on December 18th, we can see the old districts and living spaces of Budapest through family archives, amateur photographs, and videos. The pictures prove that the downtown area was always the kind of space where cinemas, theaters, museums, coffeehouses, and personal stories could coexist perfectly with the course of history.

During December 18th and January 30th, we can immerse ourselves in the experiences of Budapest during the past hundred years through private photos and videos. To do this, we only have to walk to Projekt Gallery near Astoria, the venue of this multimedia exhibition of the Budapest City Image Nonprofit Inc. (Budapesti Városarculati Nonprofit Kft.), titled “My Neighborhood” – Budapest Downtown: public spaces from a personal viewpoint (Az én környékem – Budapest Belváros: közös terek személyes nézőpontból). The captured images exhibited here are urban history documents and personal memories at the same time.
Photo: My Neighborhood
The main scene of the photos and videos is the downtown area, the image of which is formed both by the 19th century’s emblematic buildings and communist era’s modernist objects. The exhibition used Fortepan and as sources as well, and thus we can see how the city looked when trams were still running on Elizabeth Bridge, and how the markets worked back in the day. The event is curated by Fanni Magyar, with media artist Esteban De La Torre.

The exhibition has two distinct parts: one section showcases a range of still images, and the other one features a selection of motion pictures recorded on Super8. These complement – or counterpoint – each other, while creating a spatial and historical connection as they represent the vintage vibe of well-known downtown locales from the end of the 19th century through the 1990s. Above all, a set of archive short movies provide an even more realistic urban scene unfolding before our eyes.