Finding the meaning of dreams with a knife


Trost (1916–1966)

Freud tended to treat the manifest content of a dream as a mere substitute for the latent content, this latter being much more important and interesting for him. Those who criticized Freud’s method of dream interpretation often started from deconstructing this view and emphasizing the importance of the manifest content. But perhaps none of them went as far as Dolfi Trost, member of the Bucharest Surrealist group, who attempted a radicalization of discussing the manifest content of dreams to overcome Freud’s generalizations. Continue reading


Rearranging Surreality: Dada and Surrealism in Budapest


(Hungarian National Gallery, 9 July – 5 October 2014)

Only a tiny number of books by André Breton have been translated into Hungarian so far (Nadja, Poisson soluble, Les champs magnétiques), and they had no real impact on Hungarian culture. Ironically, this fact can be proved also by the generous catalogue of the most important Surrealist overview to date in this country: Dada and Surrealism / Rearranged Reality. In the Hungarian text of the catalogue, Les champs magnétiques is translated as Mágneses terek several times, while the existing translation of the volume was published as A mágneses mezők. Breton is not a recurrent point of reference in Hungarian culture, although painters like Salvador Dalí, Max Ernst or René Magritte – major presences also in this catalogue — are of course well-known by the Hungarian public.

While the reception of Surrealism in Hungary still lacks precision and information, the representative exhibition of the National Gallery, organized in partnership with The Israel Museum of Jerusalem is a very important step in this direction, precisely because of its “introductory” character, that is to be felt in the selection of the exhibited works (in several cases no more than 2-3, but quite representative works by artists like, most importantly, Marcel Duchamp and Man Ray, also Joan Miró, Max Ernst, Salvador Dalí, René Magritte, Hans Arp, André Masson, Roberto Matta, Victor Brauner, Wilfredo Lam, and with the participation of Giorgio de Chirico, Paul Delvaux, Leonora Carrington, Dorothea Tanning, Marcel Jean and others), but also in the keywords that are used for the arrangement of the exhibition.

Continue reading

Beyond the Black


„Infra-noir”, un et multiple. Un groupe surréaliste entre Bucarest et Paris, 1945-1947. Dir. Monique Yaari. Peter Lang, Bern, 2014. 

A new series of books (Art and Thought: Histories of the Avant-Garde, edited by Dawn Ades and Timothy Matthews) was initiated at Peter Lang with the collective volume on the activity of the Bucharest surrealist group. It is a brave and interesting choice to begin this new series with an internationally lesser known avant-garde group, but in fact more than one third of the volume consists of an effort to increase the visibility of this very group activity by including a facsimile edition of their collective texts Continue reading

Surrealist Senses: Marcel Jean’s Representations of Budapest

au galop


The paper analyzes the spatial representations and the self-representations of the surrealist author Marcel Jean in his late autobiography entitled Au galop dans le vent (1991), where he reflects upon his life and upon the seven years that he spent in Budapest with his wife between 1939 and 1945, and also in his book Mnésiques, published in 1942 in Budapest. In this latter book the presence of the surrealist mythology of transformation can be interpreted as a representation of the dislocated self, Au galop dans le vent showing the historical and biographical contexts of these experiences.

Keywords: Marcel Jean, Árpád Mezei, Au galop dans le vent, European School, Mnésiques, surrealism, war

Imre József BALÁZS
Surrealist Senses: Marcel Jean’s Representations of Budapest
Acta Universitatis Sapientiae, Philologica, 5, 1 (2013) 17−31

Continue reading

Gherasim Luca 100

caietele   hyperion

Caietele Avangardei nr. 2/2013. Centenar Gherasim Luca;
Hyperion: On the Future of Aesthetics, Vol. VII, No. 3 (fall 2013) – Gherasim Luca centenary issue

The Romanian avant-garde has, beginning with 2013, a new scientific review: Caietele Avangardei, initiated by Ion Pop, the senior researcher of the avant-garde in Romania, assisted in this initiative by Lucian Chișu, director of the Romanian National Literary Museum as editor and Ioan Cristescu as manager editor. After a first issue containing articles about various aspects of the Romanian and international avant-garde (its reviews, its currents, its major authors like Geo Bogza, Gellu Naum, Jules Perahim or D. Trost) launched in May 2013, its second issue is dedicated in its totality to the works and biography of Gherasim Luca – a special issue celebrating 100 years from the birth of the author.

Continue reading