Attila Csörgő: Inverse Cartography

Opening: 19/04/2024 (FRI) 19:00
On view: 20/04 - 09/06/2024

Opening remarks by Benedek Vasák ex-art historian, film theorist

Attila Csörgő creates fragile equilibria, structures that seem contingent and vulnerable, and momentary constellations that can destabilize or even rearrange the perspective from which we observe the world around us, and which can soften our understanding of those (mathematical, geometric and physical) rigid systems on which these structures are themselves based. This approach applies not only to Csörgő's artistic practice, but in this case also to the space of Trafó Gallery.

‘The fairest order in the world is a heap of random sweepings.’ To this idea attributed to Heraclitus Csörgő adds that there can be a point of view from which an accidental constellation of things can still appear to be in order. On the photographs on view, strips of tape and amorphous elements scattered seemingly haphazardly throughout the gallery space are assembled into precisely constructed shapes, after the photographs of the space have been subjected to various cartographic projections. Due to the different logic behind these renderings, the gallery space is distorted in different ways, but a basic geometric shape, a square, is a characteristic element on all of them.

The cartographic projections that allow the points on the Earth's surface to be represented in a plane produce very different distortions depending on the chosen viewpoint of the map, on its main purpose and the field where it is in use, or even on the social paradigm or worldview it aligns with. Csörgő's inverse cartography reverses the logic of three cartographic projections and projects them back into space by representing the points on the inner surface of an imaginary sphere (celestial globe) instead of on the surface of the sphere (terrestrial globe), thus shifting the viewpoint from the outer, all-seeing position to the centre of the sphere.  The juxtaposition of different perspectives and mapping schemes, created at different historical times and developed for different purposes, creates a multi-viewpoint system in which the heap of random sweepings is reassembled in order again and again.

Attila Csörgő (1965) combines the media of photography, sculpture and drawing in his artistic practice. Taking mathematical, physical, geometrical, optical or other scientific questions as their starting point, his works move between states of order and disorder, and balance between opposing forces, inverting, confusing or complicating the system they have defined for themselves, and raising doubts about the constructedness of reality and the mechanisms of perception. 

Attila Csörgő studied painting and intermedia at the Hungarian Academy of Fine Arts between 1988 and 1994, and in 1993 he was a student of sculpture at the Rijksakademie van beeldende kunsten in Amsterdam. In 1998 he received the Smohay Prize, in 2001 the Munkácsy Prize and in 2008 the Nam June Paik Award. He has participated in numerous solo and group exhibitions, including the 22nd São Paulo Biennial (1994), the Venice Biennial (1999 and 2017) and Documenta 13 (2012). His solo exhibitions have been on view at SKUC Gallery and Galerija Gregor Podnar in Ljubljana, Art in General in New York, Galeria Arsenal in Bialystok, MUDAM in Luxemburg, Kunsthalle Mainz, Palais de Tokyo in Paris, Secession in Vienna, Museum Folkwang im RWE Turm in Essen and Hamburger Kunsthalle - Galerie der Gegenwart. His solo exhibitions in Hungary have been held at the Budapest Gallery, the Ludwig Museum, the Szent István Király Museum in Székesfehérvár, Vintage Gallery and Glassyard Gallery. He currently lives and works in Warsaw. 

His works are part of numerous public collections, including Centre Pompidou Paris, the Center for Contemporary Art Ujazdowski Castle in Warsaw, the CNAP-Centre national des arts plastiques in Paris, Museum Haus Konstruktiv in Zürich, MUDAM in Luxembourg, Musée d´Art Modern Grand Duc Jean, Ludwig Museum in Budapest and the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA-D) in Dunaújváros.

Supported by the National Cultural Fund of Hungary, Káli Kövek
Box Office opening hours:
  • Main hall performance days: 5 pm - 10 pm
  • studio and club performance days: 5 pm - 8:30 pm
  • other days: 5pm - 8 pm
Trafó Gallery opening hours:
  • Performance days: 4-10pm.
  • Opening hours: Tuesday - Sunday: 4pm-7pm.
  • Closed on Mondays.

  • The Trafó Kortárs Művészetek Háza Nonprofit Kft. works in the maintance of Budapest Főváros Önkormányzata.

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