Balaton-themed and lustful; naive and ironic; happy and colourful. The exhibition of the oil paintings by Andrej Tóth, titled Plattensee is now open aboard A38.
Multiple Cultural Poster of the Year winner Andrej Tóth has a new exhibition titled Plattensee aboard A38. The Hungarian National Gallery has been requesting his posters for its collection, and after winning the “Aranyrajzszög” (Golden Drawing Pin) cultural poster award, he was also admitted to the Hungarian Poster Association.
The major inspiration behind the colourful, cheerful and - in places - ironic paintings was Andrej's last summer, which he spent in Balatonalmádi. 'After the visit to the beach with the girls [Andrej's wife and two daughters] I have 20-30 minutes to myself. I sit down on the terrace of a bar for an espresso and glass of cold fröccs. People at the next table play cards, there is Bikini [a long-standing, popular Hungarian pop band] or Eros Ramazotti playing in the background, and it's 40°Celsius everywhere. This was enough for me to create Plattensee.' The favourite Balatonside spot of the graphic designer-painter is the luscious Balatonfüred, so the sultry motifs of his works come as no surprise at all.
Andrej's Plattensee was inspired by locations and people genuinely of Lake Balaton, so the roast hake, the lángos and the pickles also had to be represented among the paintings. The works interpreting the personal impressions of the artists were painted on blockboards, fruit crates, wardrobe doors and wooden fish. The project projects the imagery and joy of life of the Dolce Vita Bed&Breakfast exhibition (2009) onto the topic of Lake Balaton.
Parallel to the opening of the Plattensee exhibition, Andrej also launched his ART HEKK project, his new brand of handmade, Balaton-themed products. 'Inexplicably, the Hungarian sea has no creative world or brand today. The market is empty. There are however promising signs and several attempts at reinterpretation, so I try to be among the pioneers.' This is how Péter Geszti, the mind behind the name ART HEKK summed up the initiative:
Beach, reeds, ducks, Badacsony, sunset, summer resorts, fried dough, pancake. Waving disco laser in the night, smooth bum-bum swimming from the other shore. Swimming costumes, girls, swimming trunks and girlies, suntan-oil, mattress, buoys, ferry, the mud and its smell. The train’s noise echoing in the loudspeaker. Sailing boats. Swaying on the lake. Gnat that we swallow.
Every summer is retro, every time is past.
The lake that has northern and southern shore but no eastern and western one. How is it possible? I go further. Does Hungary even have a sea? No. Than why is the Balaton called the Hungarian sea? Moreover. How is the most popular fish of Balaton called? Hake. And which is the fish that does not live in Balaton? The hake. So, this is how things look like by us. The small but great and cheery nonsense of things where we are swimming in comfortably. The reality that we were “ha(c)king”. This is what the ART HEKK (ART HAKE) is about. To transform the like-less into likeness.
The exhibition by Andrej Tóth in the exhibition space of A38 is open until 30 June.