Camera obscura – contemporary dark rooms - exhibition
The Hungarian House of Photography invited submissions to a national Camera obscura photo contest as part of the Year of Renaissance – 2008 program series. On October 20th, 2008, there will be a grand exhibition opening from the works submitted and rewarded in the photo contest in Mai Manó House under the title „Camera obscura – contemporary dark rooms.” Balázs Telek, Rudolf Balogh prize-winner photographer is the curator of the exhibit. The exhibition opening also serves as the announcement of the winners of the recently and successfully organized Camera obscura photo contest.
Entrants may have submitted their works in three categories. Category I was open for students of Hungarian elementary and secondary schools; in Category II, any individual over the age of 18 could send in their works; Category III was an invite-only category for those established photographers and artists who have already demonstrated experience in applying camera obscura. In categories I and II, over 200 entrants submitted over 1000 entries. The professional jury (Károly Kincses, president, Klára Hudra, Sándor Kardos, Dóra Maurer) were all very satisfied both with the number and the quality of entries, especially with regards to Category II that had the most submissions.
The exhibition from the contest submissions will take place on the 1st floor of Mai Manó House and in Mai Manó Gallery. The newly opened gallery, FlagStation exhibition space will host a selection of photos taken with camera obscura and slit camera techniques during the Photography Creative Camp in August in Cserhátszentiván by artists and their students. In the Daylight Studio, Elisabeth Brühlmann's pictures will be exhibited.
The exhibition in itself is a curiosity as the technology, the equipment, and techniques creating the images require a special picture-writing attitude and preparedness from the creator. Due to their technological makings, every picture on the wall is the result of a well-thought-out creative process, therefore, visitors are promised an exceptionally complex, many times philosophically deep and significantly spectacular exhibition. An extra perk to the exhibit is the showcasing of the instruments (or photos of the instruments) the photos were taken with alongside with the detailed description of the composition of the equipment and the photos.
Exhibition opening and announcement of the winners:
October 20th, 2008 6:00pm,
Hungarian House of Photography – Mai Manó House
20 Nagymező Street, 6th district
Camera Obscura Programs in Mai Manó House
As part of the Year of Renaissance – 2008 program series, there is an exceptionally vast number of events in connection with camera obscura organized by the Hungarian House of Photography (Mai Manó House). There has never been so many programs, exhibitions, presentations, courses or camps realized in connection with camera obscura than in 2008. In August and September, we set up creative camps in Cserhátszentiván and Sopron.
From the beginning of September (until November 10, 2008), visitors may be attending an open air exhibition on the premises of Millenáris Park. "Contemporary dark rooms – the rediscovery of the camera obscura” offers a short but quintessential overview of the works from artists from the recent past and contemporary times. There are spectacular outdoor camera obscuras set up all over the town inviting visitors to inside (Millenáris Park and the corner of Nagymező and Andrássy streets designed by Péter Laczkó). You may find intriguing pinhole cameras indoors at various points of the town (ArtBázis Art Workshop/Összművészeti Műhely). By favor of Zsolt Keserue and Tamás Enyingi, there will also be a bus transformed into a traveling camera obscura cruising the streets of Budapest and showcasing ”razor-sharp” pictures of the city's swirling life turned upside down.
There will be a numberless events accompanying the exhibition Camera Obscura – contemporary dark rooms and Picture-showman 2 – Cultural History of the Forms and Customs of Viewing a Picture 'In honor of Magdolna Kolta (1958-2008),' an exhibition opening on November 10th in Mai Manó House.
Everybody is welcome to visit and check out the various events and programs of the coming period: Wednesday's Free University of Photography offers lectures on the profession of photography for people at large; the Camera Obscura and Picture-showman Weekends cater regular programs for families; also, courses in museum pedagogy and other interactive workshops, art exhibitions, movie screenings, presentations and concerts, spectacular photo attractions, puppeteers for the little ones and other spectacles invite the participation of those interested. Before Christmas, we are organizing a professional fair, PhotoChristmas, in Mai Manó House, where we will be offering the works of art from contemporary artists previously exhibited at Mai Manó House, as well as photos from commercial galleries for sale.
more about our programs »»
What is camera obscura?
This natural phenomenon can be studied the most accurately in a space sealed off from light where light from the outside can only enter through one (or more fully distinct) opening or pinhole. According to the principle, the rays of light from the outside will reproduce an upside down image of the external world on the surface across from the pinhole.
This uncomplicated natural phenomenon, or rather, its modelled and produced device had been a huge impact on the mentality and visual culture of humankind.
The earliest description of the phenomenon (from around 400 B.C. by the Chinese philosopher-mathematician Mo Ti) was followed by multiple experiments by prominent personalities of humanity's cultural history. Aristotle observed and described, while Leonardo even modelled the phenomenon. Giovanni della Porta and Girolamo Cardan were among those who developed it into a device, while Kepler gave it a name. Camera obscura, which most of the time is referred to as the forerunner of the modern camera, is still present in the age of digital photography; moreover, its simple structure constantly inspires us to further explore, think, and compose creatively.
ArtBázis Összművészeti Műhely (ArtBázis Art Workshop) (www.artbazis.hu)
Studio of Young Photographers (www.ffs.hu)
Hungarian Museum of Photography (www.fotomuzeum.hu)
Association of Hungarian Photographers (www.fotomuveszek.hu)
Hungarian House of Photography in Mai Manó House
H-1065 Budapest-Terézváros, Nagymező utca 20.