- Budapest, Hungary
- Szentendre , Magyarország
Painter, performer, poet, writer, director, actor, singer, founding member of the Vajda Lajos Studio and the Bizottság (Committee) group.
The parson's tape recorder and the paintings of Menyhért Tóth impressed him deeply in his childhood. In the second half of the sixties he met István ef Zámbó in Kecskemét, where they founded together the Purgatory Club, where concerts, exhibitions and literal evenings were held.
The idea of the open air exhibitions was born in these years also, what they organized from 1968 to 1977 in Szentendre. This led - as a chain-reacton - to the founding of the Lajos Vajda Studio, than later the Bizottság (Committee) group, which made them known nationwide.
His artworks are characterized by experimentation and playfulness, seeking for new - often provocative - types of artworks. He draws, paints, creates objects and installations, celebrates performances, sings, shoots videos, writes poetic texts.
The most prominent feature of his creations is free, natural and spontanious expression. Visual art interweaves with poetry, music or moving imagery in his works excessively rich in visual imagination and ideas.
In his images he delineates beings, worlds, happenings, conditions, events with a method similar to the explicit symbolism of graffiti. The streaming of his texts based on free associations are pervaded by unexpected word-combinations and metaphysical humour.
His appearances on stage are certified with an elemental presence - similarly to his acts in moving images. With his objects and installations he intends to reveal the latent power of things and the hidden characteristics of human nature with a grim, but at the same time affectionate, accepting manner.
He was the recipient of several awards, including the Mihály Munkácsy Prize (1990), Gyula Hincz Memorial Prize (1991), Paralell Culture Prize (2007), Klára Herczeg Prize (2009), Knight of Cross from the Order of Merit of Hungary (2014)
As a ten-year-old child, he won first prize in a dance competition with his performance of a dance known as the Lads’ Dance of Kalotaszeg (a region in Transylvania with a largely Hungarian-speaking population). His step-father was György Martin, the famous ethnographer. Martin took Éri on the trips in the course of which he collected material on Hungarian traditional dances and instrumental music, so as a child, Éri came into direct contact with living music and dance traditions. When he was 14, he became a dancer with the Bartók Dance Ensemble. His remained interested in music, and he became the bass player with the Sebő Band. Meanwhile, when the band Muzsikás was established in 1973, Éri played as a guest musician with the band. In 1978, he became a full member of the band. Éri graduated from Eötvös Loránd University of Budapest as an ethnographer and philologist of the Romanian language and Romanian literature. He plays the viola, the three-stringed “kontra,” the mandolin, and different kinds of flutes.
Éri is married. He has a son and a daughter.
Branko Ćopić (1915–1984) was one of the most prolific and most translated Yugoslav writers. He was a member of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts. Thus, Ćopić’s literary legacy is kept at SANU. His most well-known works are, ‘Doživljaji Nikoletine Bursaća’ [The Adventures of Nikoletina Bursać, 1955], ‘Orlovi rano lete’ [Eagles Fly Early, 1957], ‘Gluvi barut’ [Deaf Gunpowder, 1957], ‘Bašta sljezove boje’ [The Marshmallow-coloured Garden, 1970]. He was the recipient of the most important literary awards in socialist Yugoslavia: the NIN Prize (1958), the Sedmojulska Prize (1969), the AVNOJ Award (1970), and the Njegoš Award (1972).
Branko Ćopić was born in Hašani, Bosnia. He graduated from the Faculty of Philosophy in Belgrade in 1940. During the Second World War, he joined the partisans. He worked as a war correspondent, and after the war was the editor of several children’s papers in Belgrade. At this time, he began to write professionally, and his works are dominated by the theme of the national liberation struggle. At the beginning of the 1950s, Ćopić began to write satirical columns for Belgrade journals and precisely this was to cause him the biggest problems. The first such story, ‘Jeretičke priče’ [Heretical Tales], triggered one of the biggest scandals in post-war Yugoslav literature (see more under featured item).
Despite this, Ćopić believed that free writers in free countries could submit anyone to the ‘whip of satire’ and that this was, in a way, their duty. He criticized the ‘servile mentality’ that he linked to former times, the era of Ottoman rule (R. Petković, 2000, p. 16). He ascribed an emancipatory role to satire, as apt for the broad masses as for the ruling class. Ćopić’s reputation suffered to a certain extent due to his provisional opposition to the authorities, but given his undisputed contribution to the liberation struggle he was not seriously hindered in his work, though he remained under constant surveillance by state security.
Ćopić continued to write satirical columns and after the problems with ‘Jeretičke priče’ [Heretical Tales], his novel ‘Gluvi barut’ [Deaf Gunpowder] (1957) – in which he criticized revolutionary dogmatism and the ‘red terror’ during the Second World War – also attracted considerable attention, though only after the interpretations given to it abroad in the following years. After an interview with a Soviet newspaper in 1960 in which he talked about ‘Gluvi barut’ [Deaf Gunpowder] as well as the state of Yugoslav literature, he was expelled from the party. In the interview, he put forward the opinion that Yugoslav literature was ‘slave to the West’, which was used as the main charge against him. Given that at the time Yugoslavia and the USSR were not enjoying the best of relations, Ćopić’s statement was experienced as a provocation (R. Petković, 2000, p. 89–90).
Notwithstanding his expulsion, he continued to write freely, to publish and, even more significantly, to receive literary awards. He was readmitted to the party in 1970. Ćopić described his attitude towards the party as follows, 'I know it is a failing of mine that I am relatively anarchistic, muddled and reckless, and am not fond of discipline. I conduct myself towards the party like towards a not very strict patron, who overlooks a fair amount, binding me all the more to serve the homeland in the literary field, so that I may repay the party somewhat for its concern, help and noble attention, which grant me confidence and zeal in work (R. Petković, 2000, Sudanije Branku Ćopiću [The Show Trial on Branko Ćopić], p. 10).
Branko Ćopić committed suicide on 26 March 1984 by jumping from the Bridge of Brotherhood and Unity in Belgrade.
- Belgrade, Serbia