City guide

6 exceptional Budapest gallery exhibitions for summer 2018

Photo : Courtesy of Várfok Gallery

From a colourful retrospective of idiosyncratic paintings by the late El Kazovsky to delicately captured visions of otherworldly cameras to a collection of works by three women celebrating the unvarnished female identity, these fascinating exhibitions await viewers across Budapest this summer – and all of them welcome everyone for free. View assorted artworks by Hungarian and international visionaries for no entry fee at these current Budapest gallery shows.

“Travelling with a blind map”

Photo: Kisterem Facebook page

Many 21st-century souls lead nomadic lifestyles while constantly searching for someplace to call home – but what can we consider as “home” in our transitory modern existence? What does it mean to belong in a society any more, and why is that phenomenon so different for travellers self-propelled by curiosity and the migrating masses who are forced into perpetual motion by sociopolitical forces beyond their control? These questions roam throughout the multimedia works by six international artists coming together to share their peripatetic paths in this intriguing exhibition.


Where: Kisterem Gallery – District V. Képíró utca 5

Open: Tue-Fri 2pm-6pm until July 6th.


El Kazovsky: “Monument”

Photo: Courtesy of Várfok Gallery

The spellbinding lifework of El Kazovsky – a Russian-born phenomenon of Hungary’s art scene from the late ’70s until his death in Budapest ten years ago – continually inspires modern artists with his paintings’ striking colour range and distinctive motifs like howling wolves, winged torsos and ballerinas dancing atop precarious heights. In 2015, the comprehensive El Kazovsky retrospective at the Hungarian National Gallery became one of the museum’s most popular contemporary exhibitions of recent years; now viewers can see the artist’s bold canvases in this memorial display.


Where: Várfok Gallery – District I. Várfok utca 11

Open: Tue-Sat 11am-6pm until July 28th.


“I will be your mirror”

Photo: Courtesy of Erika Deák Gallery

Three accomplished female artists present unvarnished reflections of womanhood in this new group exhibition that dares to express unpretentious beauty instead of carefully choreographed portraiture. As a British woman of Romani ancestry, Delaine Le Bas creates culture-spanning photography, embroidery and richly decorated pictures. Hungary’s Zsuzsa Moizer paints eye-catching landscapes populated by organic forms with mystic references to her intimate self. The oversized canvases of Kristina Schuldt feature female figures that seem to dance in a spirit of feminine triumph.


Where: Erika Deák Gallery – District VI. Mozsár utca 1

Open:  Wed-Fri noon-6pm, Sat 11am-4pm until July 31st.


Claudia Kraus: “Insight”

Photo: Courtesy of TOBE Gallery

Blurring boundaries of landscape photography and inner expression, Vienna-based artist Claudia Kraus presents ethereal images of abstract forms and spaces influenced by the Japanese concept of yugen – finding beauty in darkness. Monochrome graphics delve into subconscious worlds framed by familiar contours of nature, yet containing abstract forms uniquely perceived by individual viewers. In each photo, Kraus strives to inspire concentration and dissolution amid artworks that double as “a projection screen for states of the soul, visually manifested and experienced”.


Where: TOBE Gallery – District VIII. Bródy Sándor utca 36

Open: Mon-Wed 1pm-7pm until August 1st.


BB5000: “Campari”

Photo: Courtesy of Horizont Gallery

Drawing on a century of Italian design culture, diverse modern works celebrate the its iconic imagery with avant-garde verve in this visually bursting exhibition. Italy’s BB5000 artist collective aims to emulate the groundbreaking developments of early-20th-century Futurists such as Giacomo Balla and Fortunato Depero while adopting influences of subsequent Italian intellectuals and architects. Viewers experience a synthesis of retro motifs and contemporary aesthetics in colourfully volatile graphics that add twists to everyday aspects of human perception.


Where: Horizont Gallery – District VI. Zichy Jenő utca 32

Open: Tue-Fri 2pm-7pm, Sat 2pm-6pm, or by appointment (and by appointment only during August), until September 12th.


Tamás Waliczky: “Cameras”

Photo: Courtesy of Ani Molnár Gallery

As a pioneering new-media artist working with digital imagery since the early ’80s, Hong Kong-based Hungarian visionary Tamás Waliczky earned the Golden Nica Award of Ars Electronica with his 1989 series Machines – a renowned visual experiment melding computer graphics and optical illusions. Now Waliczky presents his new solo exhibition Cameras: a black-and-white collection portraying fanciful photography equipment based on real instruments dating back to the 19th century, yet imbued with carefully captured contemporary reflections of beauty seen through virtual lenses.


Where: Ani Molnár Gallery – District VIII. Bródy Sándor utca 36

Open: Tue-Fri noon-6pm, Sat 11am-5pm, from July 5th to September 29th.