Layers of Time 09

museum in progress asks: Anett Hámori

For museum in progress' exhibition series "Layers of Time" in DATUM you chose the date 25 December 1989 as basis for your artwork. What significance does this date have for you, what do you associate with it?

1989 is an important date for me. I was 4 years old when we were travelling to my grandmother by car and listening to the radio. There was a programme about the story of Ceauşescu and while I didn't understand much, the name of Ceauşescu was fixed in my mind and this is one of my first memories from my very early childhood. I don't know why, but I kept repeating the name of Ceauşescu later. Naturally at that time I had no idea who he was and what happened, but still the name of Ceauşescu has a special significance to me.
25 December 1989 is the date when Nicolae Ceauşescu was executed and thus stands for the end of the Romanian Revolution. In addition to this, 1989 is a significant date for Hungary as well: it was the year when the country became independent.

Have you worked on this subject before in other pieces of art?

I usually think in series and I have been working on the series entitled "PC – Politically Correct" for 1,5 years, besides it corresponds with my doctoral topic at the University of Pécs as well.

Which aspects of your artistic work are especially important to you?

The focus of my artistic practice lies on stories and events; the works can be regarded as visual casts of the information I am exposed to during my everyday life. Intrigued by present conflicts and catastrophes – the riots in Kyrgyzstan, natural and nuclear disasters in Japan, the Costa Concordia and the force-feeding of women in Mauritania – I choose the medium of watercolour for moulding my observations due to its unrepeatable and symbolic nature, because it fits best the process of expressing a certain moment. Currently I am also interested in the phenomenon of international volunteer programmes and I am researching the personal motivations of volunteers behind planting trees or helping orphaned children in remote parts of the world. The major sources of my topics are the internet, newspaper articles, press photographs and footages of documentaries. Beyond the personal standpoint, I relate to my subject with a critical and documentary approach.

If you could determine one of your works of art to outlast the course of time and to be still admired in the far future, which would you choose?

Now I would choose the "Politically Correct" series, because this is my latest work: it has a very complex and actual theme representing and reflecting our age. In my opinion it is very important that we act in the world. Everything we do represents a conception of the world, and in this way we are all political – and if something is not political or critical, there is no conception of the world.

Are significant personal experiences important for your art? If yes: Could you give an example?

Yes, my personal experiences are very important in my art. The prime subject of my observation is the human being and the interpersonal relationships and communication. I am interested in how people live, feel, move, the way they change and above all, in their impressions. It is a kind of emotional and personal interaction that I am inspired by in my artistic practice. The focus of my works is stories and events: the visual transformation of my everydayness. I choose images that inspire me, arrange them in a specific order and paint them – in this way they turn into a formally and contextually meaningful story.

What is the appeal in creating a work of art for public spaces or the media?

The more direct interaction with the observers.

To what extent should art fulfil any socio-political tasks?

As I already mentioned, it is very important that we act in the world. Everything we do represents a conception of the world, and in this way we are all political. Something that is not political or critical has no conception of the world, and that is not art.

How would you characterise good art?

Good art takes responsibility.

What are the limits of art?

Today the limits of art are so extended, that there are no limits at all.

All participating artists of "Layers of Time" are asked to answer the same questions. In this way the serial character of the project is emphasised as well as the artists' individual points of view, and the interested readership gets additional information about the works and their creators.