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October 23 - November 26, 2020

Along the border between wonderful self-oblivion and alienation, Tibor Pogonyi develops his naturalistic paintings. His interest lies in the everlasting question of our relationship with our own “self”, with our fellow human beings and with nature. The contradictions, dissonances and helplessness that inevitably accompany our search for answers are captured by Tibor in his paintings. His precisely composed sceneries appear to us like snapshots taken from the flow of time – familiar and, at the same time, puzzling. And yet, in the form of the omnipresent non-finito, they carry within them traces of the ephemeral and the transient.


Works such as Mauer (“Wall”, 2020) are nothing less than exemplary for Pogonyi’s provoked mysteriousness and the complex game he plays with temporality. In this way, the seemingly banal “scene” in Mauer turns out, on closer examination, to be a vanitas. The youth of the self-engrossed male figure in the center contrasts with the age of the man sitting on top of the wall. Reverently, almost melodramatically, this man lays his hand on the shoulder of the young man as a symbolic connection between youth and age. The foreground and background also form a contrast with respect to mortality. While the background is dominated by a bush in full bloom, the shadows of fall branches, the majority already without leaves, are apparent in the foreground. The completely shrouded, mysterious figures who flank the old man on top of the wall remain obscure. With the figure in the blue drapery, Pogonyi mirrors the “laying on of hands”, but leaves the viewer unclear about the “relationship” of the shrouded figure to the others.


An antithesis to the symbolically charged works in the exhibition is provided by Köpfe VI (“Heads VI”, 2020) – a direct confrontation with the human tragedy that is currently taking place in front of the eyes of the world from the numerous people driven to flee their countries. Fear, despair, accusation, but also hope, pride and dignity, are expressed by the faces of those portrayed in this painting. With the unusual format, Pogonyi succeeds in creating both an ambient and a psychological density. In contrast to the media images of people fleeing, which easily allow us to keep our distance, the viewer comes extremely close to those depicted. The history of every individual figure in this painting seems to be familiar to the viewer. One of the reasons the artist succeeds in this is the compositional arrangement. With the figure looking directly at the viewer in the center, the picture is subtly reminiscent of the depiction of the Last Supper.


Tibor Pogonyi (*1974 in Eger, Hungary) studied painting with Prof. Fridhelm Klein and Prof. Anke Doberauer at the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich. Humankind as the alleged “crown of creation” is always a recurring theme in his oeuvre. Pogonyi’s works are exhibited in Europe and Asia, and can also be found in institutional collections, such as Diözesanmuseum Freising.


23.10. - 26.11.2020

Türkenstr. 32, 80335 Munich

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