I write, She writes, We write19 October 2011 – 18 November 2011
The story that Agnes von Uray (or as we have known her for years, Ágnes Szépfalvi) have been painting, drawing and writing since the beginning of her career, belongs to all of us – male and female beauty, eternal questions, quandaries, fights and dramas of relationships, the contradictions of femininity, and the occasionally irresolvable issues of family relations... In addition to her artistic eras, she has also used various names during her career. She worked under the name Ágnes Szépfalvi, and joined with Csaba Nemes (who changed names with Zsolt Veres for a while), as Monique L., she hid behind a fictitious person, and on several occasions, she used imaginary biographies for her single exhibitions in the 1990s, when she exhibited the pictures of a French artist, curated by János Szoboszlai. From 2010-2011 she created charcoal drawings with Joachim Hein, titled Tita & The Lion.
The current exhibition of the INDA Gallery focuses on family relations, that will seem incredibly familiar especially to the middle-generation. The young who grow up in an era of digitised records, can see family albums only at their grandparents', and learns about the blurred faces and their stories from fading pages. But the great-grandmother's handwritten diary, filled with exciting notes, is rarely there, unlike in this case. We should note the part of the family legendry, the artist's new surname, the married name of the lady who wrote the diary, Ágnes Péterffy (Frau Wilhelm von Uray), which was the surname of the next generation of women. This is the name that Ágnes Szépfalvi adopted last year. It seems that this continuum, objectified, induced the creation of a series of drawings and an exhibition. In the artist's words:
„Why do we do what we do not agree with? – What kind of an inner program controls most of our actions? – Where did we learn the games that embitter our lives? – Why is it that only self-knowledge can save us from the programmed traps?” (Zsuzs F. Várkonyi) Recently, I made a decision that strangely resulted in the postponement, imperilment of a significant exhibition. It changed something that I had been waiting for very long, very much. It happened so, that although I believe my entire career is a personal portrait, I bring in another point of view. My great-grandmother's. Since my birth, she had been recording the events she considered important. Simple sentences, data. For a very long time, I remembered it as a nice book. Now I took it out and glanced it over again. It is different from the memories that have been told, and by the storyteller, emphasized and repainted. This is coloured as well, of course. My great-grandmother's parlance, her writing, underlinings, notes, etc., they all create interesting imagery, and thus, atmosphere. I forgot a lot of things, or remembered them differently. This is also an approach, of course. One of the many that makes the map of my family. The diary follows the first 14 years of my life from 1965 till 1980. I have my favourite parts, but it is difficult to chose only one for the press-matter. Perhaps the words of the last pages:
„wants to be an artist”, or „Memci, my 84-year-old great-grandmother”, where suddenly she writes instead of me.
Thus, the title of the drawing and the exhibition became:
I write She writes We write
We write the present together.
The pictures of the exhibition are the printed and, with a red pen, superscribed, emphasized pages of the diary, pen drawings from the family album, paintings of emotions, they belong here, although the people on the pictures are not always family members of the main characters. As they say, the resemblance may be accidental.
Budapest, October 11, 2011 Agnes von Uray
translated by Zsanett HorváthBACK