Virtual Exhibitions

Concrete - Books bound in concrete
2008, June 4 - 2008, June 7

János Hübler and Nemere Kerezsi, two Ph. D. students at the Budapest Academy of Fine Arts (supervisor: György Jovánovics), have created this installation using two cubic meters of concrete and eighteen cubic meters of discarded books. Originally part of a large collection donated to the Central European University by Radio Free Europe’s research institute, the books, most of which had lost all relevance in the meantime, were offered to the public gratis. The eighteen cubic meters of books used for the installation are actually the leftovers, unwanted by the public. The two artists executed the project with the help of Márta Rácz. The books were built into a concrete foundation regardless of their content. Arranged with their spines pointing downwards, they constitute interesting shapes of various heights, due to their different sizes...

Contagious Middle Ages in Post-Communist East-Central Europe
2006, September 15 - 2006, October 20

Among a range of interesting Post-Communist cultural phenomena, we have witnessed the emergence of what has been labeled the New Middle Ages by Umberto Eco. The resurrected Middle Ages in Hungary and East-Central Europe, however, exhibits different traits from West European festivals and spectacles. Above all, the phenomenon lies much closer to politics, sometimes with positive overtones, but, unfortunately, frequently with menacing, even destructive effects. Medieval monuments became a central battleground in the wars that marked the dissolution of Yugoslavia. And this is not atypical, political battles continue to be fought around medieval sites throughout the region. The centuries-old ruins of medieval fortresses and grand church edifices are being reconstructed, resurrected from the annals of history, to be turned into national...

Propaganda, Music and Noise
2005, January 1

This virtual exhibit supports one aim, the protection of freedom of expression and promotion of the free word. This project is supported by the Open Society Archives (, with the generous contribution of the Friit Ord Foundation (

Public opinion, expression and thought are values constantly under threat. Restraining open communication and blocking access to information are the main means of manipulating public opinion and thought. In the defense of these fundamental freedoms, the Open Society Archive seeks to educate the public about the dangers of censorship, violations of freedom of expression and how these methods of control can be resisted.

Peace and Wars
2004, September 15 - 2004, October 28

The exhibition stages the work of Normantas Paulius, a Lithuanian born photographer, traveller and researcher from Hungary. The approximately 190 photos taken over 20 years in 10 countries of the Far East will be exhibited in respect for Robert Capa.

The photographer comments:
"During humid Asian nights, I converse with vanished cities, their people and temples, with Buddhist treasures along the Mekong. They tell me about peace and war in these lands. As there had been more war, in the East I take more photographs of PEACE."

Words from Skirmantas Valiulis, famed Lithuanian photo critic:
"Photographer Paulius Normantas is a phenomenon: he does everything by himself, much of it in reverse. After his first exhibits, at a time when the Lithuanian school of photography had achieved sufficient renown both at home and...

The Divide
2004, June 15 - 2004, August 29

Since the outbreak of the second intifada in September 2000, the number of Palestinian attacks against Israelis has grown significantly. In order to prevent the uncontrolled access of Palestinians from the West Bank into Israel and thus further attacks, the Israeli government decided in June 2002 to build a physical barrier along or near the Green Line (the 1949 Armistice Line). The planned route of the barrier, however, runs largely inside the West Bank, often on expropriated private land, imposing severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinians. In some cases, the barrier will turn Palestinian towns and villages into secluded enclaves and cut villagers off their farmland and water resources. And there are plans also for additional depth barriers and other obstacles to be built east of the main barrier.

The barrier is a 50-...

Auschwitz 1945-1989
2004, April 23 - 2004, May 30

The Open Society Archives has arranged a series of programs on the occasion of the opening of the new Hungarian national exhibit, on the former site of the Auschwitz concentration camp. The opening of the Hungarian exhibit in Auschwitz coincides with the sixtieth anniversary of the beginning of the deportation of the Hungarian Jews, more than four hundred and thirty thousand of whom perished in Auschwitz, the epicenter of the Holocaust.

OSA has decided to reconstruct the first two official Hungarian Auschwitz exhibits, which opened on site during the time of Communist rule in 1965 and 1980, respectively. The two exhibits, in line with the official historiography, retroactively replaced the Jewish inmates with communist anti-fascist resistors in the camps; the Jews had been killed in Auschwitz, and their traces were lost...

2003, March 5 - 2003, May 11

The exhibition focuses on Stalin`s death, the mourning ceremony, the funeral and the fate of Stalin`s remnants afterwards. The exhibition does not want to deal extensively with the Stalinist personal cult, it`s role in the Soviet political system, and it's visual representation (mass propaganda, socialist realist art, etc.). Our task is to reconstruct the long moment of the dictator`s death - from the official announcement of his physical collapse until the replacement of his embalmed corps from the mausoleum. Stalin was the ultimate embodiment of a regime in symbolic as well as in a physical sense. The exhibit aims at presenting and analysing the effect of the vanishing of his figure on the public, and also the problems his decease raised for the regime and for his successors.

Besides the usual historical sources, (press and...

Unerasable Communism
2002, April 11 - 2002, May 28

In conformity with my artistic interpretation of secondarily produced reality, in my newest series of the socialist period I have used the propaganda photos, printed matter and special technique: the idyllic and heroic lie topos of the Soviet epoch in Hungary as the most effective bearers of the Communist idea of kitsch are painted by eraser and the pictures are destroyed by eraser as well. The pictures, the ideas shown on them, the social practice and the political as well as cultural general taste born by the ideas are the unerasable negative traces of the epoch. By painting and erasing them I wish to share the aesthetic experience of getting rid of these traces with the public. Károly Kelemen painter

The Millenary Exhibition
2001, December 31 - 2002, February 28

Our new exhibition focuses on the millennial events, programmes and works of art that received public funding in Hungary. This is the only exhibition so far that has tried to give an overall picture of the kinds of official programmes and centrally sponsored works that were created on the occasion of the millennium. To collect this material, we turned for help to the state institutions that organised, subsidised and documented these events, including the Millennium Commissary Office, the Ministry of Cultural Heritage, the Religious Editorial staff of the Hungarian Television, Duna Television, the Hungarian Radio, the Hungarian Post Office, the Coin Trade Joint Stock Company of the Hungarian National Bank, the Office for the Protection of Historic Monuments (previously the Committee for the Protection of Historic Monuments) and the...

Bodies in Formation
2001, May 17 - 2001, July 29

Salvo. With a deafening roar fourteen thousand soldiers ran through the gates of Prague's Strahov Stadium, the biggest stadium in the world, covering an area larger than eight football pitches. They launched into a performance which drew gasps of admiration - and sometimes fright - from the crowd. The musical accompaniment built up to a crescendo as a huge five-cornered star formed from their bodies with the corners spreading from the stands on one side to those on the other. In the middle of the star a soldier climbed the pyramid of human bodies. He spread his arms wide, raised his eyes to the sky and from the Strahov Stadium, the "hymn of the working people" - the Internationale - sounded over Prague.

Performances such as these were typical of the Czechoslovak Spartakiads. They were some of the most spectacular mass gymnastic...