In the summer of 2011 wandering at a flea market I came across a huge plastic bag full of documents. For some time I had already been collecting lost notes, letter fragments or shopping lists-writings that once used to be important for someone but became useless over the years. The whole bunch of papers including birth certificates, laboratory findings, and postcards belonged to one single person (János K.). They basically outlined the history of the 20th century.
Removed from their original contexts and joined together with deliberately chosen images they are enriched with new meanings partly resulting from the subjective and associative contents of the texts.
This is a meeting of two worlds in a single place and time.
01/ Messed up cover page for a self-study workshop booklet (ca. 1930’s)
02/ Passage from Mária R.’s (later Mrs János K.) self-study workshop booklet (1930’s)
“I have read a really nice thought in a book: “We people are treading on each other because we know nothing about each other…” It made me think…What a difference it would make to the world and to the face and evolution of humanity if …”
03/ Passage from János K.’s lecture entitled Congregation (end of the 1930’s)
“And when you are thinking about home, our dear brothers in arms faraway on snow-covered battle planes, remember that we have never forgotten about you and are paying for you praising your name and will always remember you with reverence and love. We are yearning for the day of peace to come when you are back again here with us. Since that day do pray as we pray and ask the Virgin Mary, our Patroness for her special assistance and protection in your heavy fighting to follow the path of your ancestors and carry the Hungarian flag with the Virgin Mary to victory thus winning the final triumph and gaining respect and honor to the Hungarian blood.
János K., VII. grade gymnasium student”
04/ Blood donor card (1945)
“(illegible title) According to the certificate on the other side János K. really gave 250 grams of blood on 16 April 1945 in the Russian donation center.
(illegible signature) Major Doctor m.p. stamp”
05/ Message from POW camp (1945)
“My dearests, let me inform you that I am healthy what about mother’s? Kisses to everyone till I see you all again because me and my comrades are just waiting for our transfer home.
1 Oct. 1945”
06/ Evidence of Application for Permanent Residence (1943)
25 Sept. 1943
07/ New Year’s Greetings (1956)
Trust Your Life with Jesus and Rejoice 1956 (BÚÉK–Hungarian acronym for Happy New Year)
08 / Curriculum Vitae (1951)
09/ Announcement for apartment house owners (1966)
„Dear Owners! Uncle János K. suddenly and tragically departed from us. I believe that you all agree to express our sympathy-as owners-on his final obsequies by sending a collective wreath. I requested Mrs Antal Sz., our janitor and fellow owner to order the wreath and she was so nice as to accept the task.
Budapest, 27. XII.1966
10/ Letter of condolence (1966)
„Dear Manci and Baba,
I can only repeat what Teri has written to you. I wish you strength and health in your great sadness and in managing your new situation in life. Love and kisses from Laci
P.S. Express my deepest sympathy to Klári. In my name as well and kisses to the children. Teri
It's snowing heavily here today. We have a lot to sweep.”