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/ecm diskurs 53: Fake It Till You Make It – OFF-Biennale Budapest


Friday, March 26, 2021, 7pm, via zoom
Public Lecture by Nikolett Erőss and Hajnalka Somogyi curators OFF-Biennale Budapest
Moderation Luisa Ziaja /ecm-director team

OFF-Biennale Budapest is the largest independent contemporary art event in Hungary. It was launched in 2014 as a grassroots statement project that was to testify to the independence, resilience, and capability of the local art scene. Started and sustained by a handful of art professionals, the one-time event has since turned into an independent platform where art engages with pressing issues, and the underlying dialogues and collaborations of artists, curators, researchers, and various civic groups can be nurtured and promoted on a local as well as international level. OFF has never applied for Hungarian public funding and steered clear of state-run art institutions—a policy that, while it counters the project’s principles of cooperation, sharing, and serving the common good, is still deemed necessary in order to preserve freedom of expression and professional integrity. A prefigurative political practice, OFF has been performing an art institution that operates democratically and sustainably – thus, according to principles we wish would become the norm in Hungary’s cultural scene.

The lecture will introduce the aims, methods, and various phases of the project and give an overview of its upcoming 3rd edition, to be presented between 23 April and 30 May 2021.

Nikolett Erőss is a curator based in Budapest, Hungary. After years of working for major institutions of the Budapest art scene (Trafo Gallery, Ludwig Museum – Museum of Contemporary Art)  she joined the curatorial team of OFF-Biennale Budapest in 2014. She was a lecturer at the Academy of Fine Arts, and co-editor of the online magazines  and Currently, besides her engagement at OFF-Biennale as co-curator and head of programming, she works for Budapest Gallery.

Hajnalka Somogyi is a curator based in Budapest. Since 2014, she has worked as leader and co-curator of OFF-Biennale Budapest, which she initiated. In 2013-2014, she was editor of Between 2009 and 2012 she was curator at Ludwig Museum of Contemporary Art, Budapest, and between 2001 and 2006 at Trafo House of Contemporary Arts, Budapest. She co-founded the independent art initiatives Dinamo and Impex, both in Budapest.