Of all the ways of acquiring books, writing them oneself is regarded as the most praiseworthy method. (Walter Benjamin)
While this is undoubtedly true, the drive for “picture writing” is just as important as the ambition to create text. Veronika Jakatics-Szabó acquires her books through her images; she replaces – or sometimes supplements – writing with visuality. Her journal containing her reading experiences is, in itself, a praise for reading, books and writing, be it in the form of letters or visual elements. She uses the book – the medium which still defines written culture today – as a mass of bound, written papers to create objects. Alternatively, she creates its contents using her own drawings, or unifies text and image on boards reminiscent of the pages of children’s books.
The artist transforms the experience of reading into images; she transfigures the worlds revealed in the books she reads into pictures, thus defining herself as receiver, then artist. In spite the personal nature of this process, these works carry experiences that are familiar to many and invite viewers on a journey of discovery into the visual worlds that hide behind writing.
The representation of urban spaces and their dwellers is a central theme of Veronika Jakatics-Szabó’s (1983) painting. In her exhibition entitled Reading Log, she explores an indispensible element of urban existence – that of reading, of one’s relationship to texts and books. She not only brings up a new theme, but also acquires new media: her modes of expression are further enriched by motion pictures and book objects, made specifically for the exhibition.