Pathos Management

Conversation series about the past and the present of topoi in Hungarian art

Time: April 30, 2019, 6 pm to 8 pm
Venue: Vasas Szakszervezeti Szövetség Székháza [Vasas Federation of Metalworkers' Union], Magdolna u. 5-7., Budapest 1086

#1 Péter Hecker, Izraeli drón a Hortobágy felett (Israeli drone over Hortobágy), 2013, acrylic, canvas, 140 × 200 cm, private collection

Pathos management is a non-existent concept created from the fusion of “pathos formula” and anger management. Thus, one of the sources of this ephemeral concept goes back to psychology and social psychology, and the other to art history, specifically to Aby Warburg’s work. Warburg, in one of his letters, described himself as a psycho-historian of culture, who examines how visual topoi expressing strong emotions, passions and sufferings, the ecstatic and the tragic migrated from one historical-cultural era to another. As a modernization and updating of the iconological method, pathos management looks at how Hungarian visual culture has dealt with Hungarian regime changes over the past hundred years, how it related to the ideas and feelings these changes brought up, and how it has re-interpreted its own topoi and pathos formulas. On the one hand, the series examines which topoi, symbols, and allegories of Hungarian art have become once again current, and what happened to these topoi over the course of independent Hungary’s first century.

The participating artists are invited to discuss one of their artworks selected for this occiasion. The conversations series evokes a TV program of the 1980s in Hungarian state television, the so-called “Artwork of the Week,” as well as other similar art events that were organized by artists Little Warsaw and Miklós Erhardt in the early 2000s.

Concept and host: Sándor Hornyik, art historian

Regime Changes

Over the course of 2019-2020, launches the events series entitled Regime Changes, which, in the form of lectures, exhibitions, research presentations, thematic magazine issues, examines what real and symbolic changes arise from political turning points in a given era. How do views and narratives live on underneath the surface so as to emerge in a re-interpreted form as the dominant discourse of another regime? Case studies commissioned or adapted for the series present the shifting, often politically appropriated and contradictory interpretations of political, social and cultural events of the past hundred years.

The upcoming events of Pathos Management:

# 2 May 21, 2019 Ferenc Gróf - Société Realiste: 19? 9, 2010, print, 100 x 100 cm, Institute of Contemporary Art, Dunaújváros

# 3 June 11, 2019 Kitti Gosztola: A kinyerés mélységei (The depths of extraction), 2017, steel cast, 70 x 50 cm, Dunaferr-Art Dunaújváros Foundation