Press Room

Film Screening - LENINLAND (2013)
Posted: 14/February/2017

15 February 2017

6:30 pm

Directed by Askold Kurov, 52 min.
In Russian with English subtitles

The screening is introduced by Dr. Oksana Sarkisova (Blinken OSA)

Free admission | Limited seats are available on a first come first serve basis

In the USSR, the cult of Lenin had replaced the Orthodox religion that Communists wanted to eliminate. At the end of Soviet era, in the village Gorky, 20 kilometers from Moscow, the last and the most ambitious Museum of Lenin was built. In former days it had 3000 visitors per week, now it’s only 20. Today it looks like a temple of forgotten civilization, a place that has fallen out of time. But faithful to the ideas of Lenin the keepers of the museum remain. They wait for random visitors in the abandoned halls – and for the return of former times.

The story of the museum is shown through the two main characters Evgenia and Natalya, the caretakers of the museum. Natalya is 52 years old, a history teacher at the local school, fond of the Communism ideology, she really loves and respects Lenin. She likes the place where she works. 56 years old Evgenia is a scientific researcher. She’s also a hard-core new-age believer; she worships all sorts of gods, and considers Lenin one of the biggest among them. But after 10 years of dedicated work in the museum, she now wants to leave it and continue her spiritual journey in another place.

1956 Hungarian Refugees in the US - new photo galleries
Posted: 26/January/2017
A new photo gallery documenting how Hungarian refugees were treated from their arrival to their eventual resettlement, and another gallery specifically dedicated to honoring the tireless work of processing 1600 Hungarian refugees and obtaining scholarships for 800 of them at one of the 600 American universities participating in the World University Service (WUS) carried out by Gary Filerman and his colleagues in 1957 are now available on our Hungarian Refugees in 1956 website.
Call for Applications - Accredited Continuing Education Program for Teachers
Posted: 25/January/2017
Call for Applications - Accredited Continuing Education Program for TeachersScopes and Constraints in 20th Century Hungarian History Instructors: Historians András Mink and Krisztián UngváryOrganizer: Blinken OSA Archives / Central European UniversityContinuing education registration number: 27282-153-2016Number of credit hours: 30Course dates: February 11 - April 29The course meets 7 times on Saturdays: February 11, 25; March 11, 25; April 8, 15, 29.Course venue: Blinken OSA Archives, 1051 Budapest, Arany János u. 32.Number of attendees: 20Application requirements:Qualifications: University degree Recommended occupations: High School Teachers, History TeachersParticipation fee: noneDeadline for application: Saturday, February 5, 2017, midnightProgram description: The Hungarian political community is divided partly along apparently irreconcilable narratives and interpretations of its 20th century history.One of the main goals of this training is to offer helpful tools to explore the reasons behind this divide. The course focuses on 20th century traumas that generated radically different interpretations in Hungarian historical memory, triggering heated debates throughout the last century, and up to this day.The classes take place at the Blinken OSA Archives. The Archives, founded in 1995, houses an exceptionally rich analog and digital collection pertaining to the history of Communism and the Cold War, as well as European history of human rights and mass human rights violations. Exploring these collections, along with the wide ranging audiovisual sources, offers a unique opportunity to present and analyze the historical questions at hand. After getting acquainted with the source material, teachers will be able to introduce these sources into their own curriculum. The training ensures the professional exchange of ideas through lectures, panel discussions, source analysis, and the presentation of best practices – and will thus rely significantly on active participation.Submit applications to: kovacsia@ceu.eduDue to the limited space we encourage applicants to submit their applications early / Applications are processed on a first come first served basis.
Shooting the Revolution: Sergei Eisenstein’s October (1928)
Posted: 25/January/2017

Described by the director as “the first embryonic step towards a totally new form of film expression,” October was and remains a film of multiple challenges. It is the last installment of Eisenstein’s historical-revolutionary film epic, which began with the films Strike (1924) and Battleship Potemkin (1925). After the international success of Battleship Potemkin, Eisenstein was commissioned to create a film celebrating the tenth anniversary of the Bolshevik Revolution. The director used the occasion to experiment with new ways of editing, which he conceived as intellectual montage, as well as to construct a new authoritative account of recent history by presenting a dramatic and dramatized chronicle of the events leading up to and during the October Revolution. While his version of history was ultimately rejected by the commissioning authorities and the film underwent multiple reediting, it remains an important milestone in film history as well as an early lesson in cinematic memory politics.

This screening is the first event in the SHOOTING THE REVOLUTION film series that is part of the WHAT’S LEFT program series organized by the Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society Archives, which aims to revisit the complex socialist ideological and visual legacy in the year marked by the centennial of the Bolshevik Revolution.

Wednesday, January 25, 6pm


The screening is introduced by Dr. Oksana Sarkisova (Blinken OSA)

2015 Annual Report released
Posted: 06/December/2016
Blinken OSA’s 2015 Annual Report has been released in a new, online format.2015 was marked with significant changes in the life of OSA, as the institution was renamed following the pledge of generous donation by Vera and Donald Blinken. Successful exhibitions and public programs were organized along with a variety of hosted events, including Blinken OSA’s most significant spin-off program, Verzio Film Festival, attracting a total of more than 15000 people.New acquisitions were added to the already rich collections of the Archives, making them available for researchers and the wider public. Our colleagues participated in workshops and conferences, published in prestigious archival publications, taught courses and provided professional archival service to researchers on and off site.We invite you to browse our report in order to gain an in depth view of our diverse activities:
kick-OFF: Learning from Poland, Part 1.
Posted: 01/December/2016

kick-OFF: Learning from Poland, Part 1.

Discussing strategies and models of cultural operations that respond to the current political challenges get a strong focus within the upcoming kick-OFF series, a series of discursive events leading up to the 2nd edition of the OFF-Biennale Budapest. In the next kick-OFF event, three art professionals with various background will discuss through specific art projects the changing conditions of artistic production and exhibition making in Poland.


The event will be moderated by Lívia Páldi, member of OFF-Biennale Budapest’s curatorial team.


The event will take place on the 5th of December from 6 PM to 8 PM
Venue: the Research Room of the Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society Archives. (1st floor)
Address: 1051 Budapest, Arany J. Street 32.


The language of the presentations and discussion will be English.

The event is part of the kick-OFF series of the second edition of the OFF-Biennale Budapest.


Supported by the The Adam Mickiewicz InstituteWarsaw and the Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society Archives, Budapest. Special thanks to Anna Szylar.


Varga László (1948-2016)
Posted: 28/November/2016
A Blinken OSA Archívum munkatársaiként megrendülten értesültünk egykori kollégánk, a nagyszerű történész és levéltáros, Varga László váratlan haláláról. Varga László a kommunizmus, az 1956-os forradalom, a holokauszt és a kommunista állambiztonság egyik legkiválóbb szakértője volt. Munkájával jelentősen hozzájárult többek között a mi archívumunk szakmai profiljának alakításához és gyűjteményeink gyarapodásához is. Osztozunk a család, a barátok és a történész kollégák gyászában.
Posted: 28/November/2016
New Website on 1956 Hungarian Refugees LaunchedThe Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society Archives launched its new website on the 1956 Hungarian refugees in the United States with the generous support of the Blinken family. The website contains still unexplored or lesser known material (text documents and photographs) from the archive of the International Rescue Committee at the Hoover Institution and the relevant collections of the National Archives and Records Administration of the US. The Blinken OSA is now making these recently revealed and digitized records available online for scholars and the wider public in both Hungarian and English.The bilingual site, which will be regularly updated is available at:
Posted: 24/November/2016


Daniela Comani: It was me. My Diary 1900–1999 in the Context of the 1956 Revolution in the Western World

October 19 – November 27, 2016


On the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the Hungarian Revolution of 1956, the Goethe-Institut Budapest, in cooperation with the Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society Archives, presents MY DIARY – YOUR NEWS. It was a deliberate decision to present the exhibition with a perspective that looks back at the days of the revolution from the outside. On one hand in time: the Berlin based Artist, Daniela Comani’s large size art installation entitled It was me depicts the whole of the 20th century through 365 entries of an imaginary diary, while constantly forcing the viewer to take the position of the principal actor. On the other hand we position ourselves outside Hungary to reflect upon the events of 60 years ago. How did the media in other capitals react to the events unfolding in Hungary? Alongside Daniela Comani’s installation, items from OSA’s own collections of newspaper clippings, photos and newsreels document the intensity of reactions all over the world, from Reykjavík to Buenos Aires.


VERNISSAGE: October 19, 2016, 6:30 p.m.

My 20th Century
Posted: 21/November/2016

My 20th Century

In connection to the exhibition My Diary – Your News the Blinken Open Society Archives present Ildikó Enyedi’s Cannes award winning film. The screening will be followed by a discussion and Q & A with Ildikó Enyedi, director and scriptwriter.

On the last night of the 19th century, two ladies are travelling on Orient Express. Dóra, a high society swindler, sits in the 1st class compartment, while Lili, a committed anarchist, in a 3rd class one. They are twins, but don’t know each other as they got orphaned and separated decades ago. Z., a ‘run-away aristocrat’ falls in love with both of them, and composes ‘the ideal woman’ by forging the two into one.
dir.: Ildikó Enyedi / fiction film / Hungarian with English subtitles / 1989 / 99 min

Public Lecture by Anne J. Gililand
Posted: 17/November/2016

Public Lecture by Anne J. Gililand

Thursday, November 17, 2016 | 5 PM

Of all the information and memory professions, the archival field is the one that is most integrally responsible for the long-term preservation of and access to records and other forms of documentation, which are especially instrumental in the lives of people who have found themselves forced to leave their homes and homelands because of oppression, expulsion, war, natural disaster or economic exigency.

A Blinken OSA 1956-os pályázatának díjazottjai
Posted: 04/November/2016
A Blinken OSA 1956-os pályázatának díjazottjai 2016. tavaszán az 1956-os forradalom hatvanadik évfordulója alkalmából a Blinken OSA Archívum nagyszabású, nyilvános programsorozatot indított, melynek keretében két pályázatot hirdetett meg. A szakmai zsűrik értékelései alapján a díjnyertes pályamunkákat 2016. október 22-én, szombaton hirdettük ki. Most pedig közzétettük a nyertesek listáját és a díjazott projekteket, melyeket a lenti linkeken lehet megtekinteni, letölteni!Köszönjük minden pályázónak a színvonalas munkát!  Diákpályázat „Kódold a múltat! 1956 remixelve”A 20 év alatti fiataloknak kiírt pályázat azok jelentkezését várta, akik az Archívum digitális gyűjteményeinek felhasználásával, a digitális technológia segítségével érdekes és egyéni módon mutatták meg 1956 történetét újszerű vizualizációs megoldásokkal, különleges szoftveres applikációkkal, játékok fejlesztésével.  Tanári pályázat „’56-ról hitelesen”A pályázat célja az volt, hogy az 1956-os forradalom hatvanadik évfordulóján, elsődleges források, eredeti film-, kép-, hang-, és írásos dokumentumok segítségével, a diákok számára érthető és átélhető módon mutassák be a forradalom korát, törekvéseit, eseményeit, következményeit, tanulságait. A pályázatra kétféle pályamunkát lehetett benyújtani: iskolai megemlékezésekhez használható forgatókönyvet, vagy olyan elektronikus alkotást, installációt, melyet szintén iskolai környezetben lehet bemutatni.  
Stabat Mater for the Victims and Refugees of 1956
Posted: 27/October/2016

Stabat Mater for the Victims and Refugees of 1956

The Stabat Mater by Giovanni Battista Pergolesi, who died at a tragically young age, will be performed on the 60th anniversary of the crushing of the 1956 Hungarian revolution to commemorate the thousands who died or were wounded and the hundreds of thousands who were forced into exile..

Date and time: November 4, 2016, 6:30 p.m.

Venue: Vera and Donald Blinken Archives, 1051 Budapest, Arany János u. 32.

Éva Bodrogi – soprano 

Judit Rajk – alto

OStrings kvartett

Boglárka György, Elvira Vučurević – violin

Péter Bor – viola

János Madaras – violoncello


Noémi Konta – basso continuo


The OSingers Choir: Luca Dudinszky, Virág Farkas, Bettina Hacknauer, Emire Ibrahim,

Anna Juniki, Žeigure Nora, Emese Szabó, Roberta Szklenár, Viola Thurnay, Bernadett Vida, Júlia Viszkeleti

Conductor: Paul Marsovszky


Ungváry Krisztián
Posted: 24/October/2016
Mélységesen megrendített bennünket, hogy az 1956-os magyar forradalom 60. évfordulóján, egy nyilvános rendezvényen, a Parlament előtt, véleménye kinyilvánítása közben tettleg bántalmazták Ungváry Krisztiánt, a legújabb kori magyar történelem egyik legismertebb és legkiválóbb kutatóját, a kortárs emlékezetpolitika egyik legaktívabb alakítóját.
1956 Competition Awards Ceremony
Posted: 20/October/2016
1956 Competition Awards CeremonyThis spring, on the 60th anniversary of the Hungarian Revolution of 1956, Blinken OSA launched a series of major public events including two competitions. ‘Encode the Past! 1956 Remixed’ – Student CompetitionThe student competition - launched jointly with Prezi - invited young people under 20 to present the story of the 1956 Revolution through innovative visualization solutions, and/or by developing special software applications, using Blinken OSA’a special digital collections. Let’s Speak the Truth about ‘56 – Teacher CompetitionThe competition invited teachers to present the era of the 1956 revolution - its aspirations, events, consequences as well as the lessons learned- using primary sources from Blinken OSA’a special digital collections including original footage, images, voice recordings and textual documents. This competition accepted two kinds of projects: either a script for a commemorative event at the school or an electronic installation, again to be used in the school.The winners of both calls will be announced at an Award Ceremony on 22 October, 2016, at Blinken OSA. All awarded projects will be published on OSA’s website in October, 2016.
1956, The World in Revolt - Book Launch
Posted: 11/October/2016

The Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society Archives and the CEU History Department

cordially invite you to the book launch of 

1956, The World in Revolt

by Simon Hall, University of Leeds

Introduction by András Mink, Research Fellow, Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society Archives

Friday, October 21, 2016, 5.00 PM

1051, Budapest, Arany János u. 32.,

Emigrant Tunes
Posted: 27/September/2016

September 29, 2016 6:00 PM, Blinken OSA Archívum

Béla Bartók’s thoughts on cultural diversity (approximately 50 minutes)

Extracts from Bartók’s letters, lectures and publications.  The selected pieces will be presented together with his musical compositions inspired by folk music and the phonograph recordings he made during his journey to Arabia.

Performance by József Gyabronka, actor

Péter Sülyi’s film: Moving Images about Bartók (1988, approximately 25 minutes)
Before the screening there will be a talk with the filmmaker.


Editor: Géza Madaras
Blinken OSA Archívum

1051 Budapest, Arany János utca 32.

Poverty Revisited / Újragondolt szegénység
Posted: 25/September/2016

Poverty Revisited | Conference in memoriam István Kemény

27-28 September 2016

OSA is making the documentary heritage of István Kemény, outstanding Hungarian sociologist, a leading researcher in poverty and the Roma, publicly accessible. On this occasion OSA is organizing a two-day conference in collaboration with the Voices of the 20th Century Archive and Research Framework, where researchers, professionals, artists and activists reconsider the problem of poverty and exclusion, their significance in today’s society, and outline their vision of the future in this field.

Throughout the two days of the conference unique documents, photos and film excerpts of Kemény’s joint creative work with film director Pál Schiffer will be exhibited, and in the evenings visitors will be welcome to watch documentary film screenings with live discussion. On the two days following workshops will be organized for secondary school students with the participation of homeless activists, in order to sensitize students to the problems of marginalized people and social groups.

 First-Hand Experience with Homelessness
Posted: 23/September/2016

First-Hand Experience with Homelessness / Sensitization workshop for students
Első kézből a hajléktalanságról // Érzékenyítő workshop diákoknak // 2016.09.29-30 // Blinken OSA Archívum

A Blinken OSA Archívum szeptember végén konferenciát rendez abból az alkalomból, hogy a szegénységkutatásaival iskolát teremtő Kemény István szociológus irathagyatéka az OSÁ-ba került. Az esemény kapcsán társadalmi érzékenyítő programot hirdetünk középiskolásoknak a szegénység, a kirekesztettség, és a szolidaritás témaköréből.

A foglalkozásokat vezeti: Balog Gyula, az EKH koordinátora
Közreműködnek: Erdős Jánosné Mária és Szigeti Adrienn aktivista

A részvétel INGYENES. Jelentkezési határidő: 2016. szeptember 23.

Pályázati felhívás! / Call for submissions (in Hungarian)
Posted: 15/September/2016
A Blinken OSA két 11 millió forint összdíjazású pályázatot hirdetett meg diákoknak és tanároknak az 1956-os emlékév kapcsán.
OSA Participates In the CEU Welcome Afternoon
Posted: 08/September/2016
OSA PARTICIPATES IN THE CEU WELCOME AFTERNOON A long standing tradition of the Central European University is to begin the academic year with an informal event for students to meet the various support units, CEU’s administration and student support groups. 
Verzio DocLab
Posted: 06/September/2016
Pre-Session Week Begins at OSA
Posted: 01/September/2016

Pre Session Week begins at OSA!

At the beginning of each academic year The Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society Archives (OSA) hosts students from the various departments of the Central European University for a full week. The aim of these visits is for students to discover the various research possibilities at the archives.

Olympics and Politics: Berlin / Barcelona 1936
Posted: 09/August/2016

Olympics and Politics - Berlin / Barcelona 1936

 An exhibition organized by the Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society Archives


Vernissage:June 23, 2016 at 6:30 p.m.

23 June – 28 August 2016

Galeria Centralis, Vera and Dondald Blinken Open Society Archives


On the occasion of the 80th anniversary of the Berlin Summer Olympics and the Olimpíada Popular, the Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society Archives presents the exhibition Olympics and Politics – Berlin / Barcelona 1936,which examines how these international sporting events became the terrains for ideological and physical battles in the heavily politicised 1930s, and how the two Games acquired different political significance. Using archival sources (newsreel footage, films, photos, etc.), the exhibition views the two-week spectacle of the Berlin Games through the lenses of its counterpart, the Workers’ Olympics, and the war the Nazi ideology so pompously and magnificently promoted through its Olympics.

37th Annual Meeting of the European Coordination Committee on Human Rights Docum
Posted: 16/June/2016

On June 16-17, 2016, over 25 human rights data professionals (information managers, librarians, documentalists, archivists, lawyers and activists) gathered in the Research Room of the Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society Archives at Central European University (CEU) in Budapest for the 37th annual meeting of the European Coordination Committee on Human Rights Documentation ( ECCHRD ). ECCHRD is an open, informal network of Europe-based institutions and organizations producing, recording, managing and publishing human rights information.

Night of the Museums at Blinken OSA
Posted: 09/June/2016

Vera and Blinken Open Society Archives –  Night of Museums, June 25, 2016

16:00-00:55  Olympics and Politics - BERLIN / BARCELONA 1936

Exhibition in Galeria Centralis


19.00 – Olympics and politics on the Piste: Remembering Ilona Elek and Endre Kabos


Saxophone player, János Vázsonyi, improvises on the topic of the Olympics


Screening the private film “Richárd Deutsch: My Journey in Germany, 1936”

(Excerpt from Richárd Deutsch’s collection, Photographs and Home Movies Collection of Privát Fotó és Film Alapítvány deposited with Blinken OSA by Márton Kurutz film archeologist)



Fencing Show:


In memory of Ilona Elek and Endre Kabos, two extraordinary Hungarian fencers, Katalin Varga, Fruzsina Gólya, Zsolt Nemcsik and Kende Fodor will show men's saber fencing and women's foil fencing.


Judge: Etele Ravasz


21:00 -  Musical Background – GARPO


Film screening and musical improvisation


Repeated screening of the private film “Richárd Deutsch: My Journey in Germany, 1936”


Partners: Goethe Institute, Cervantes Institute  

Russian Service Audio Archives of RFE/RL -  Now Online
Posted: 09/June/2016
Russian Service Audio Archives of RFE/RL - - Now Online Browse 26 K Russian radio broadcast files for free!The Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society Archives at Central European University (OSA) presents an online, fully searchable database of audio programs produced by RFE/RL Russian Service during the last half a century.Thanks to the cooperation between BLINKEN OSA, RFE/RL and the Hoover Institution Library & Archives this vast cultural heritage is now open for free & open access.During 2015-2016 OSA systematized, preserved and processed this unique Cold War period audio collection. The archive includes more than 26,000 audio clips broadcast into the Soviet Union and Russian Federation by Radio Svoboda from 1953 (the year the service was established in Munich, West Germany) to 1995 (when RFE/RL moved from Munich to Prague, Czech Republic).
The Witness to Guantanamo Project
Posted: 06/June/2016

The Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society Archives cordially invites you to a public talk by

Peter Jan Honigsberg , Professor of Law at the University of San Francisco, Founder and Director of the Witness to Guantanamo Project


Monday, June 13, 2016 at 5 p.m.
at the Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society Archives

Posted: 22/May/2016
The Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society Archives (Blinken OSA), one of the initiators of the open Access movement intends to award a fellowship each year to promising young technology expert, scholar or activist working at the intersection of humanities, social sciences and technologystudies or technological solutions. The fellowship is especially intended for those, with or without degree, who have strong practical skills in developing technological tools to make knowledge and data broadly available to the public; who have an interest in challenging information management practices in libraries and archives; who are ready to contribute to building innovative visual taxonomies or catalogs based on unorthodox ideas; and who can challenge the control of information by governments and publishers to promote civil liberties and online activism.
Call for submissions for students and teachers (in Hungari
Posted: 22/May/2016
Call for submissions for students and teachers (in Hungarian only) On the sixtieth anniversary of the Hungarian Revolution of 1956, the Blinken OSA Archives has launched a series of public projects including two calls for applications for students and teachers. ‘Encode the Past! 1956 Remixed’ – Student Competition Youth under 20 are invited to develop innovative visualization solutions to rethink the events and memory of the 1956 Revolution using the digital collections of the Archives. Let’s Speak the Truth about ‘56 – Competition for History Teachers Teachers are invited create projects that present the 1956 Revolution - the events, the goals, the consequences as well as the lessons learned, using primary sources of information, original footage, images, voice recordings and written documents. Digital resources:  More info: