“Fictive diary of human relationships – taken from the life and world of a girl living with autism.”
The exhibition called „Me,You, Them…” byof Tamara MihálykóOpening date and time: 6 p.m., 21 June 2013
Venue: Klauzál13 Bookshop and Contemporary Art Gallery, at 13, Klauzál Square.
The exhibition can be visited until 21 July 2013,
Open: Tuesday – Friday: from 12:00 to 18:00, Sunday: from 10:00 to 16:00
Tamara Mihálykó introduces herself to the wider public for the first time with a graphic series of nearly 500 drawings. The drawings can be interpreted as a fictitious diary with actors, who, real as they may be, only meet in Tamara’s drawings at locations where they have never been together.
Drawings of human relationships – taken from the life and world of a girl living with autism.
Tamara’s drawings are an individual mix of a diary, fiction and photography. Tamara only draws herself or people that are important for her. These are real people in most cases, characters she met at the primary school, at the care home, some of whom she has not seen for as long as a decade. Though most of the characters are real-life, flesh and blood people – just as real as the locations are -, the situations in which these figures appear are, for the most part, fictitious. Most of the figures arranged in pairs or embedded in lifelong friendship or eternal love do not know each other. Their clothes, object or actions (like holding hands) are the reflections of Tamara’s wishes. It is a dream puzzle of real elements, that is infinitely personal and shocking. Just think of those movies shot in blue box with a screened background, or those paper figures that can be dressed with paper clothes – both can be recalled while watching Tamara’s drawings. The drawings circle around Tamara’s most important topics, over and over again: marriage and friendship, in a word: the „Relationship”, and its possible venues, respectively: a walk, „refurbished flat”, a disco club … All these topics would not be unusual for a young girl: boyfriends and girlfriends, lifelong amorous relationships… however Tamara copes with autism. All her days are prepossessed with a condition that causes insurmountable difficulties in the area of human relationships, among other things. Tamara lives in a care home, because she is incapable of leading a self-sufficient life. Formulating her emotions and thoughts in words presents a great difficulty for her, and interpreting other persons’ emotions, gestures and manifestations in their entirety – we might say – does not stand a chance in Tamara’s world. Yet she draws from morning until night, she notes the detail of something she cannot experience but which she can grasp in terms of shape and form. A structure of relationships covering some 42 people and recorded on several hundred drawings creates outlines for her; she builds home and safety around them.
The people in Tamara’s drawings are idealized: all characters look up from the paper surface at the viewer with huge eyes, beautifully drawn face and hair, like in a photograph where the people look into the camera. The people are beautiful, in most cases they are holding hands or stand alone. Only the background and clothing – and the partner – changes, the face always carries the features of the given character, always exactly in the same way, to the millimetre, down to the last hair. Tamara’s drawings are special alloys of exact, realistic and idealized representation: her self-portray includes huge blue eyes, mauve lips like mountain ranges and a precisely worked out orange mustache. They remind us of Frida Calo’s mustached self-portrays anytime we see Tamara’s self-portrays. Finally: Tamara keeps these drawings on her, like a photo album, often looks at them, just like they were the photographic proof of her own dream world, until the paper is worn out.
The exhibition organised by the Mosoly Otthon (Smile Home) Foundation is an important stage of the figurative art program called AutisticArt that has been going on for several years, the background of which is provided by regular visual art classes delivered by artists in the care homes of people living with autism. Charity auctions held to benefit the care homes also belong to the program (Art Hall /Kunsthalle/, 2008, 2010, 2011, Cyrano, 2012), and the exhibition called PRIVATE LABYRINTHS, a joint exhibition of 17 autistic artists and 9 contemporary artists, held in the Hungarian National Gallery in 2011, was also realized within the framework of this program, which was the first event in the world of fine arts in Hungary to call attention to the drawing manifestations of people living with autism and the coincidences and parallels in these drawings with certain forms of expression of contemporary figurative art, which gives ample food for thought.
The curator of the exhibition: Hajnalka Tarr, figurative artist
Tamara Mihálykó is an inmate of the Symbiosis Foundation of Miskolc.