Sunday, 19 June 2011


Budapest's City Park Lake has been turned into an enormous outdoor gallery to celebrate Hungary's term as chair holder for the Council of the European Union. 

Organisers from the Budapest Museum of Fine Arts invited twenty-five artists from several EU member countries to participate - each one displaying a brand-new or existing piece of work on the 20,000 square metre artificial lake.  The exhibition also allows the broader public to experience and appreciate contemporary art in the open air. One of my favourite pieces was Waiting (pictured above) by Slovakian artist Erik Binder. The piece, which includes a park bench and a street light which appear to be floating on the surface of the lake supposedly challenges our expectations of reality and our perceptions of an objects functionality.

Representing Hungary was Balázs Kicsiny and his sculpture Late Departure, Early Arrival. The piece is consistent with many of his previous works and continues the narrative of his 2010 installation Temporary Resurrection. Featuring the same helmet-wearing figures as before, this time Balázs places them - still eating their dinner - inside a 'four headed' vehicle. "The aim is to condense the contradictions of experiencing space and time into a visual paradox. When we set off from home, we can never be sure if we will return in the same time and space as the one we departed in, just as those who stayed at home cannot be sure that it is the same people returning home who they said goodbye to earlier. The people who stayed at home are personified by the four figures in the welded-together vehicle waiting for supper, and the people returning home are the viewers who wish to interpret the work, who are excluded from the work, from the space of the nonexistent home.” (

Czech artist Kristof Kintera chose to display one of his earlier pieces Paradise Now - a series of sculptures created using cordon railings welded and manipulated to look like a herd of metallic, alien-like deer.

One of the most eye-catching sculptures at the outdoor exhibition was Krzysztof M. Bednarski's neon pink creation - K.M Column-Fountain. Standing at 5 metres tall, the 7 headed Karl Marx fountain towers above the rest of the pieces. 

Royal College of Arts graduate Tea Mäkipää's piece Atlantis was the most poignant. The young Finnish artist has created a piece which highlights the fragility of the man-made structures we create, pointing out how we are truly helpless against some of the forces of nature. Following the devastating events which unfolded during the natural disasters in Japan the piece is slightly chilling in comparison to the rest of the sculptures...

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