Travellers... at the Threshold of a New Era
Opening: February 24, Friday 17.30
An offering by the Ananda Marga Yoga group of Budapest.
It is a spirit of radical wholism that seeks expression here, the weaving together of the philosophic, the political, the artistic, the spiritual and the revolutionary. The Earth and the Sky and the wheel have turned: the travellers stand… at the threshold of a New Era.
The exhibition draws its inspiration from the Roma flag, which it takes as a metaphor for the Creation: the green Earth as the physical, the blue Sky as the spiritual, and the wheel representing the journey through earth and sky, through the Creation. Drawing on the wisdom of Yogis and mystics, a clear message emerges about the journey: it is to be one of collective struggle to create a benevolent human society, and, a personal journey to attain spiritual elevation. Both of these themes are explored.
Words and lyrics of Indian activist and mystic, P.R. Sarkar, have been used to inspire several paintings and art works by local artists.
“The Supreme Being is calling you in the roar of the ocean, in the thunder of the clouds, in the speed of lightning, in the meteor’s flaming fires. Nothing good will come from idleness. Get up and awake the clouded chivalry of your dormant youth…”
The exhibition acknowledges the “tears of Hungary’s oppressed” that have flowed down the centuries, and which continue to this day. P.R. Sarkar: “We should not forget even for a moment that this whole animate world is a large family in which nature has not assigned any property to any particular individual… how then can there be any justification for a system in which someone receives a flow of huge excess, while others die for lack of a handful of grain?”
And yet, striving to contextualise all within the spiritual, an unshakeable optimism pervades the exhibition: “Yes, we must fight exploitation and establish a benevolent human society. Yes, we must fight our own inner demons. Yes, the Supreme is with us. Yes, we will be victorious!”
Curators: Dada Ravishekharananda, Ananda Jyotishrii (Nagy B. Julianna)
Nagy B. István: Vasjankó (Arcképcsarnok XIX.) / Iron Johnny (Portrait Gallery XIX.)
2001, acrylic on canvas, velvet applications, fibreboard
97 x 80 cm
Photo: Sulyok Miklós
Emília Rigová: (out of) the deadlock
Exhibition at Gallery8
Aug 2, 2016 - Sep 23, 2016
Opening: 2 August, 2016, 3pm
The work entitled (out of) the deadlock is a video-installation accompanied by a deconstructed musical piece. Its point of departure is the historical fact of the Roma in the Slovak state taking refuge in the woods during WWII. The woods represent the ultimate refuge which remains to an individual or a group being excluded from the human community. They provided a hideaway and nurture. Nature thus figures here as a space of unconditional acceptance and “love”. The human figure in the embryonal position implies a danger and the instinctual response to it, as well as the relation of the man and nature—the man being a child born out of her uterus and finding a safety and nurture in it. The carpet represents the life of the Roma before the refuge, the life in the natural circumstances of their community from which they have been forcefully ripped out. The body is floating above the carpet, rather than resting on it, which hints at the uprooting. In a broader sense, the distance between the body and the carpet symbolizes that Roma oftentimes feel the necessity to supress some aspects of their personality or to distance themselves from their Roma relatives or friends if they want to succeed in the majority society. The stillness of the body is an index of the waiting of the Roma stashed away in the woods and of the need to be quiet, motionless, as if frozen. More broadly, it refers to the deadlock of the current Roma in their societies, as being forcefully assimilated, segregated or marginalized. The deadlock symbolizes an emptiness but simultaneously a potentiality, a lack of agency and a step towards its reclaiming. The soundtrack, an authentic recording from a funeral of the author’s relative, is consciously distorted to invoke a danger represented by the Nazis and their collaborators and the destructive effect of being rooted out from one’s life, from one’s culture. Though being a mournful song, the Romani music functions here as a symbol of the Roma’s capacity to break the deadlock which is, after all, inherent to every individual or a group.
More information here.
camilo antonio & ion neculai: the many phases and sights of race
exhibiton at gallery8
june 23, 2016- july 29, 2016
how can a philippine-born man speak so clearly and deeply from within the roma subjectivity? this was the question lingering in the air when we first encountered the poetics of camilo antonio at gallery8, a roma contemporary art space in budapest, in march 2015 at the opening of the roma body politics exhibition. we anticipated a simple speech, but instead, the staff and visitors of gallery8 found themselves in a performance: reciting the beautiful and simultaneously subversive lines of our astonishing guest-poet who taught us how „race” is enacted in the moment of „the gaze” and how spectatorial surveillance complicates social relations that are historically and inextricably woven into the european collective consciousness and cultural ethos.
camilo’s beautiful and sophisticated poetry, with ion neculai’s strikingly apt artwork, inspire our co-activism- our constant going against the grain- that connect us in kinship. we are villagers of the same homeland, the land of outcasts, the out of space, and the „no longer there but not yet here” experience, as he describes it. we are learning to live in and with the myriad of belongings that has become our essence. it is a privilege to bond with him through his verses in disobedient resistance: countering economic hazing, to join his subversive misbehaving that unmasks the institutionalized privileging of class, to smile with him when he exaggerates and twists exoticism into constructive humour, all that, to restore our faith in the community of humanity and the power of simply respecting life with planet earth.
more information here.
Learning the History of Roma Survival and Resistance
Exhibiton at Gallery8
May 25, 2016- June 19, 2016
The (re-)exploration of the forgotten and unwritten holocaust history of the Roma proclaims that Roma had the power to resist oppression, take part in different forms of resistance, and thus have the capacity to inhabit a different role than that of the victim. The research reveals new sources to demonstrate how Roma stood out in their conduct as compared to other inmates in the camps, and developed several survival strategies to preserve and maintain human dignity even in the most daunting circumstances. It collects the history of escapes, the uprisings on May 16, 1944 and August 2, 1944; it explores the memory of Roma heroes and the non-Roma supporters of the Roma resistance movement as well as the active and heroic participation of Roma people in the partisan movements around Europe under the National Socialist regime. In this process of re-learning Roma resistance emerges as an inspiring model for Roma knowledge, agency and consciousness... In this immersive rewriting of Roma history, “the history of resistance replaces a history of oppression”.
The irregular exhibition of Gallery8 attempts to (re)learn the Roma Holocaust and the Roma Resistance by archive documents, survivor testimonies and documents connected to the history of the roma resistance.
On the International Roma resistance Day we celebrate Roma taking an active and conscious role in shaping their lives and defining their own faith both during the holocaust and in its aftermath. On this day we celebrate the power of Roma assembly and the alliances we build for Roma self-determination.
(The Gallery8 exhibition is built on the new research – conducted with the leadership of Roma scholars, artists, organizations and activists - initiated by La Voix de Rroms, by Ternype Roma Youth Organisation, by the Tom Lantos Institute and supported by IHRA.)
Curator: Diana Bencze, Nanna Dahler, Tímea Junghaus
Péter Nyári Sárkány: Intersecting Identities
Exhibition at Gallery8
Feb 26, 2016- May 13, 2016
"When analysing my personal development, I find not only two, but three intersecting identities – Hungarian Jewish, Hungarian Roma and Hungarian Christian... I consciously chose each of these identities in certain life stages (although I inherited and grew up with them). First, the Hungarian Jewish identity dominated, then the Hungarian Roma identity, until finally the three united and merged in Christianity. My triple identity is reflected in both the themes and the shape of my artworks. " (Péter Nyári Sárkány, Budapest, 2016)
Péter Nyári Sárkány is a contemporary artist. His early career was influenced by the Hungarian Neo-avantgard, namely by Miklós Erdély and Január Baksa, by the former Young Artists Club, and by the Vajda Lajos Studio in Szentendre. In the beginning he used several objet trouvé in his artworks, and then he slowly developed his unique use of materials: On his wood boards gravel, sand, gypsum and glass fragments appear in the relief-like factures shaped by pastose painting layers. His works are thus on the frontiers of painting and sculpture. He embraced the remembrance of the Roma Holocaust in his art already in the early seventies.The “Night Death March”, the “Flaming People” and the Wallenberg portrait series, which he exhibited in installations, can be seen as experimental paintings of performative genres. His land art works composed together with István Lugossy and Endre Darázs are also well-documented in photos and videos.
His exhibition at Gallery8 - the Roma Contemporary Art Space is based on artworks displaying angels, Romany traditions and commemoration to the great Hungarian and Romani artists, as well as a site specific performance.