Gábor A. Nagy

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Különös módja a fejlödésnek, 2009 Acrylic On Canvas 100x140 Cm © Gábor A. Nagy
Nem tartozom azok közé, 2009 Acrylic On Canvas 100x140 Cm © Gábor A. Nagy
Inkább érdekesség, 2009 Acrylic On Canvas 100x140 Cm © Gábor A. Nagy
Papíron létezik, 2009 Acrylic On Canvas 100x140 Cm © Gábor A. Nagy
Natural Progression, 2009 Acrylic On Canvas 100x140 Cm © Gábor A. Nagy
Levers And Dials, 2009 Acrylic On Canvas 100x140 Cm © Gábor A. Nagy
Step Back, 2009 Acrylic On Canvas 100x140 Cm © Gábor A. Nagy
It Works The Same, 2009 Acrylic On Canvas 100x140 Cm © Gábor A. Nagy
Poor, Poor, Pitiful, 2009 Acrylic On Canvas 100x280 Cm © Gábor A. Nagy
Quick Facts
Hajdúböszörmény, Hungary
Birth year
Lives in
Works in
Berlin, Budapest
Representing galleries
Gallery Godot Budapest
surrealism, digital, figurative, conceptual

Letter Mosaic Painting

Every century has its own tragic moments in history.  For us today, the 20th century is probably the most important, because it is our instant heritage. We are currently in a time of transition. There is a lot of rhetoric in the air and talk about a crisis. This has both perceived and real effects – economic, social, and political. It is indicative of the insidious power of capitalism that it has affected so many areas of our daily experience.  In an attempt to criticize capitalism’s strong hold and to move beyond the apathy of the individual, there seems to be an increased desire for social renewal. The starting point of my work is the observation of human behavior at economic and socio-political downswings: the nature of hysteria, decadence, despair, lies and the infinite black-hole we are looking into as a frightening vision.

The focus of my interest is the use of clichés both in narration and painting. How can we fill clichés with life and emotions? I am interested in creating an atmosphere in which different elements metamorphose into their opposites: the safe to unsafe, the familiar to strange, beauty to beast and light to dark. In my work, I try to combine the personal with the impersonal, and to balance the specific and the generic, where everything is familiar but nothing is recognizable.

My recent paintings consist of three different layers. The first layer is made up of the vivid lines of hand-painted letters, which exist as a mosaic-structured image. The second layer is the sense of the letters as a coherent text.  The third layer is the painterly context of the previous two layers. The image-layer is the surface of the painting where subjective experience and the momentums of the impersonal, outside world are dissolved in the emptying of portrayal and narration, as well as into the colorful kaleidoscope of small letters. Since it often takes great efforts to identify the details of the objects depicted, my paintings provide space for the creative imagination of the viewer, thereby involving him/her in the creative process. During this peculiar interaction, the image-world of the creator is complemented and completed by images from the viewer’s own memories. The text-layer as a decontextualized emblem or expressive fragment of content goes beyond the surface. The text-fragments are never directly connected to a particular figure within the image, but rather there is a more blurred and more associative relation between text and image. Sometimes, certain repeated words become keywords or the title of the painting, and help in the recognition of individual connections. Instead of using mass media channels, these fragmented pieces of text are appropriated from more subjective and uncontrolled sources, such as blogs or thematic internet forums, where my fears about our world are communicated by other people`s words. The painterly context layer is created by a hand paint process. This visual structure can generate solid forms on several levels of expression, from the most sophisticated to the most radical ones.

Gábor A. Nagy



1972                born in Hajdúböszörmény, Hungary

works and lives in Berlin


1993-98           Hungarian Academy Of Fine Arts, faculty of painting, Budapest

prof. Zoltán Tölg-Molnár

1998-2000      MA degree in the Hungarian Academy Of Fine Arts

prof. Zoltan Tölg-Molnár and guest prof. George Peck

1999                 postgraduate studies in the Akademie der Bildenden Künste in Nürnberg

prof. Diet Sayler

Individual Exhibitions

1999                Les Complementaires, Batofar, Paris (with Anna Szigethy)

2000                Baby Doll, Stúdió Gallery, Budapest

2001                Under Construction, Goethe Institut Inter Nationes, Budapest (with Gyula Domián)

Lumiére Obscure, Hotel K und K Opera, Budapest

Opening, Gallery Illárium, Budapest

2002                Corso, Gallery Godot, Budapest

2004                MMS, Gallery Godot, Budapest

Compressed Painting, MATÁV Exhibiting Hall, Budapest

2008                Grammar Of Glamour, Gallery Godot, Budapest

Selected Gruop Exhibitions

1997 Visiting, City Gallery, Pécs

Nachwuchs, Haus Ungarn, Berlin

Staircase-light-geometry-70’s-Budapest, Hungarian Academy Of Fine Arts,                                        Budapest

1998                Nature And Art, Gallery Medium, Bratislava

Cartographers, Ernst Museum, Budapest

Space Formats 6., House Of The Budapest Gallery, Budapest

Mansard, Kunsthalle, Budapest

1999                MA Fine Arts Students In The London Institute, London Institute Gallery, London

2000                Crosstalk, Kunsthalle, Budapest

Dialogue, Kunsthalle, Budapest

2001                Rome Holliday, Accademia d’Ungherese, Rome

2002                Stilllife, Gallery Godot, Budapest

Ex-Röltex, Deák Palace, Budapest

Four Painters, Museum Ignác Tragor, Vác

2005                Click-a-Cliché, Galerie Reiner Tisch, Berlin

2007                Junge Kunst Aus Ungarn,  Die Drostei, Pinneberg-Hamburg

2009 Neue Figuration, Collegium Hungaricum, Wien

Digital Agora, Olof  Palme House, Budapest

Awards, Scholarships

1999 Hermann Lipót Prize

Scolarship of the Marie de Paris in the Cite International des Arts

2000                Erasmus-Socrates Foundation, Nürnberg

2001                Scholarship of Hungarian Academy in Rome

2003                Scholarship of Budapest Gallery and Stadt Frankfurt am Main

Selected Bibliography

János Sturcz: Két magyar-két japán, Új Müvészet 1996 August

János Sturcz: Látogatás, Jelenkor 1998 February

Dóra Maurer: Térképzetek, Balkon 1998 December

Lívia Páldi: Tetötér, Balkon 1998 December

Orsolya Merhán: Baby Doll, Exindex 2000 May

Gergely Nagy: Széthull és összeáll, Müértö 2000 May

József Készman: Under Construction, Balkon 2001 June-July

Erika Baglyas: Igen is, nem is, Balkon 2001 November

Ibolya Erdös: A pixeltréner, Impresszum 2004 May

Vera Szeszlér: A tömörített tigris, Médiamix 2004 August

Ibolya Erdös: „...nagy vízben kis hal...“  Balkon 2008 November-December