METAPHYSICS OF THE CITY

Exhibition

Friday 6 July, 6:00 pm — Tuesday 24 July 2018

1061 Budapest, Andrássy út. 32

METAPHYSICS OF THE CITY

Opening on July 6th at 6pm in Platan Gallery

Artist: Aleksander Czekaj

Opening speech by Bianka Dobó artist

Warsaw and Budapest have been enchanting with their architecture and bustling streets for centuries and their buildings are silent, constant witnesses of many events in history. If we listen intently to their accounts, we will certainly get to know more than one story. Strolling through the streets of capitals, I constantly note and sketch everything that I consider to be important and interesting. A subjective look at the reality that surrounds me allows me to create my own ‚guide’ through Warsaw and Budapest. Everyone who comes there sees various realities with different consequences. I turn my first impressions into graphics to be able to talk, using the image, about what I saw here. During my stay in this city, I began to notice many similarities, but also differences between the capitals of two countries; Polish and Hungarian, whose fates continually weaved in the past and were strongly connected with each other by figures and events. Selected artworks present important places for Poland Regaining Independence. Multiple explosure photography has one very important feature for me; it allows to show one object from many perspectives and to get the impression of movement and continuous passage of time (time is the 4th dimension). Through this the photos gain an additional advantage; some kind of metaphysicality and spirituality, which makes the objects photographed by me not only purely physical.

Aleksander Czekaj is a student of the Graphics Faculty of the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw and Hungarian University of Fine Arts in Budapest. He focuses on typography, printmaking and painting. Actively takes part in variuos art events in his country and abroad. Author of many exhibitions. What mostly fascinates him in art is the matter and the structure of forms. Regardless of the topic he faces, first of all he thinks about the form. Landscape, portrait or human body always is only a pretext for him to express himself and create his own image of reality. The exhibition is a summary of my scholarship exchange under the Erasmus + program at the Hungarian University of Fine Arts.

On view till July 24th

Opening speech by Bianka Dobó:

I kindly welcome the audience in the opening ceremony of Aleksander Czekaj’s exhibition called The Metaphysics of The City. I feel honoured to be asked by Aleksander to open his show. Aleksander is fourth-year student at the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw, and he spent a semester with Erasmus Scholarship at the Hungarian University of Fine Arts in the Specialization of Graphic Arts. During that period I had the possibility to be involved in his thinking process and in his field of interests. I got to know him as a versatile artist, whose methodology can be characterized by continuous experimentation. Now he presents offset prints made by the help of multi exposition photos and also shows photos mounted onto edge-lit plexiboards here, in the Platan Gallery. Multi exposition means that the photographer takes more photos onto to one shot. The photos overlap each other what causes a kind of surreal, exciting world through the multilayer photography. This technique not only makes possible the representation of an object from more sides, but it gives a sense of motion. Beside the more plane vision of the buildings, Aleksander also can make the invisible time perceptible through motion. This moves the viewer into the metaphysical plane what cannot be ignored by sensory organs. We mostly can see a selection of the historically important sites of Warsaw, such as The tomb of the unknown soldier, The Presidential Palace, Sigismund III’s column on the main square of the Old Town, or the Academy of Fine Arts of Warsaw. There is a memorial plaque on its wall which indicates the Polish solidarity at the time of ’56. Beside the historical significance of the sites, the artist’s personal feelings and experiences served the basis for the pictures. The three mentioned buildings are located along the way which is taken by Aleksander day by day. The selection of the Budapest sites were motivated by the impressions and forms. Sometimes we can see the details of statues in the photos. These statues remain unnoticed in their environments when we walk through the squares. He makes them visible, but at the same time he also deprives them of their material. The exhibition is titled by The Metaphysics of The City which goes beyond the physical boundaries of the city. According to our talk I strengthen the artist’s personal experiences in which the space is a key of thinking. “The American geographer, Edward William Soja differentiates three approaches of the spatiality in his book called Thirdspace. Firstly, how we perceive the space, secondly how we think about it, and finally how we live it and use it. The last one, the lived and used space is in a continuous change and it unites the first and second spaces in the sense that it is real and imagined at the same time. The lived space does not only mean perspectives, personal experiences and memories, layers of history, but it also involves the smell, light, sound and the moods. The lived space is ’here and now’, the reality experienced by that specific persona at that moment. “(1.) I think this last space appears in Aleksander’s works. The monument and the space become a meeting point for the local people, the park of the king’s palace becomes a cultural place for relax, while modern skyscrapers will be the memorials of the new time. Surroundings of the building is changing, everything is in motion – the buildings remember and let us remember the things, they bring continuity into the changing system. The buildings can be identified, but are blurry as our memories. How do we remember these well-known places? What does make them unique? We meet the never seen reality in the photos. The environment enters the space elements, but the striking details become more important in this way. Mapping the space like this makes the viewer match her or his personal memories with pictures. This exhibition is a kind of personal diary of Budapest and Warsaw, in which the memories are combined with personal impressions.  I am happy to see that Aleksander could use well his staying here and he became inspired by our city. The exhibition shows the importance of co-work, as we also got many things from him. And it is good, well done. The goal of Erasmus Scholarship is the exchange of knowledge and experiences. I invite you to have a deep look around here, and let the pictures close to you. Congratulations to Aleksander. I wish you all the best, and the exhibition is open.