Etihad Modern Art Gallery to showcase artworks from the Central Bank of Hungary's collection


Published: Wed 30 Nov 2022, 5:00 PM

A fantastic selection of contemporary artworks from the collection of the Central Bank of Hungary (Magyar Nemzeti Bank, MNB) is currently being presented at the Etihad Modern Art Gallery.

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The opening ceremony was attended by Sheikh Rashed Bin Ahmed Al Maktoum and Ossama Naffa, Hungarian Ambassador to the UAE.

The art exhibition will be held until December 4 in Abu Dhabi, which will examine the connection between writing and image in Hungarian contemporary painting, titled Pictography: calligraphies, signs, gestures, and letter images.

The exhibition features 12 prominent Hungarian artists who are well-known and recognised on the Hungarian and international art scene. Many of them are leading figures of the Hungarian Neo Avant-Garde (1960s and 70s),and those who are associated with Simon Hantai's surrealist calligraphic paintings, the pieces of which were the closure material of the Louvre Abu-Dhabi.

The artworks in the exhibition build on the abstract tendencies of modern art, the different writing traditions of great cultures, and the need to express a sense of being. Their pictorial values link the personal and the universal; new ways of creating spatiality; the regaining of spirituality on the basis of archaic writing.

Recognising the importance of calligraphy to Islamic culture, which is not only a work of art but also a source of inspiration: a tangible manifestation of the spiritual world, Anna Bagyó, advisor to the MNB Arts and Culture and coordinator of the project, suggested writing as a potential theme for the exhibition.

Katalin Keserü, art historian, professor emeritus, former curator of the collection and curator of the exhibition (after two smaller pictography exhibitions in Delhi and Cairo) selected the material from the collection of the Central Bank of Hungary.

Animated films

The theme of the exhibition is extended by a selection of award-winning Hungarian animated films, most of which have been screened at prestigious international festivals.

Thanks to the collaboration of five renowned animation studios, the films selected by Anna Ida Orosz and Márton Orosz will be presented in two sections (14 films for children and 32 films for adults).

The toolkit of animated films, with their tiny gestures, signs, stylised figures, and metaphors that illuminate the relationship of associations between images, gives room to both philosophical and narrative stories.

The 100 part Hungarian Folk Tales series, produced in Kecskemétfilm Studio was launched by Marcell Jankovics. He previously worked with Gyula Macskássy, considered the father of Hungarian animation, and Oscar-winning director Ferenc Rófusz at the Pannónia Film Studio in Budapest, the most prominent centre of the golden age of Central European animation in the 1970s and 1980s.

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