Hungary Can Be Yours. Commonpress No. 51, 1984—1989. Perodical Issue
Commonpress was a Mail Art magazine founded by the Polish artist Pawel Petasz. Each issue was compiled by another mail artist who circulated a call in the network specifying a theme for the coming issue. The topic “Hungary” was inspired by the imaginary “Italian boots” of the Italian poet Adriano Spatola’s “Italy issue.” Galántai organized an exhibition out of the incoming material in the Young Artists’ Club in 1984. However, the show was immediately banned, as the authorities considered it an expression of opposition to the regime. At the vernissage, Radio Artpool’s 6th program, Hungary, was “broadcasted.” As a result of the exhibition, Galántai suffered intensified reprisals; the secret service started openly observing and restricting his activities. They confiscated the next issue of AL (Artpool Letter), a samizdat art periodical edited by Galántai, and took other measures. The exhibition could only be held again on the eve of the regime change (Young Artists’ Club, 1989), and it included a roundtable discussion involving the banned artists and the individuals/officials who banned the exhibition. The catalog of the exhibition (Commonpress No. 51) could be published in wider circulation at the time. When the secret documents became available for research, Artpool received the report about the opening of the exhibition. Using this secret report, Galántai reconstructed the original exhibition a couple of times (Artpool P60, 2000; Centrális Galéria, 2002; Area 51, Kapolcs, 2018).
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- Kotun, Viktor