ALBERT KOVÁCS AND THE SOCIETY OF HUNGARIAN PAINTERS
Albert Kovács celebrated his 80th birthday this year and the exhibition presents works he created in recent years.
Collage became the one and only genre in his art in the 1980s, but as a compositional principle it was always present in his work, from his earliest paintings to his most recent works (e.g. The Night, 2011). Another crucial element of his work involves recurring characters and motifs: faceless soldiers, officers, rulers and miserable subjects of dictatorships. One emblematic figure of Albert Kovács’s art is Ubu Roi and other creatures representing “Ubuness”. The labyrinthine network and map-like structure is an important motif of Kovács’s art, symbolically representing human existence and the mazes of the powers that be. Living surfaces are transformed into structures and edifices in his works (Újbuda, 2009) or even maps, constituting networks and mazes. Composition, for Albert Kovács, is the primary medium for expressing ideas, and to that end he seeks out suitable technical or formal means.
Albert Kovács is founding member and long-time chairman of the Society of Hungarian Painters. Owing to his determination, activity, organisational skills and inexhaustible sources of ideas, the organisation has for 21 years served as the largest professional organisation of Hungarian painters. His important activity on the art scene attests to Albert Kovács’s artistic and personal values, and professional attitude, and constitutes an important part of his creative career.
This birthday exhibition would therefore be incomplete without the presence of the Society of Hungarian Painters. The works of the artists, invited by the curator, chiefly pay homage to the 80-year-old master. The 27 artists contributing to this exhibition cannot represent the entire organisation, but their works nevertheless do represent its principles. The Society treats generic boundaries liberally; it has no preference of artistic trends or fashions, and advocates all new artistic initiatives and personal formal solutions. The Society is dedicated to maintaining multi-coloured Hungarian painting. Different in attitude, theme and style, these works represent the plurality of Hungarian art.
M. NOVÁK András
T. HORVÁTH Éva