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Dániel Halász: Borderland

On view:
June 04, 2021 – June 21, 2021
Monday–Sunday: 10am–1pm, and Friday: 7pm–9pm
Closed on Mondays.
Other location: Municipal Art Gallery of Korinthos, Korinthos, Greece
The exhibition was realized in cooperation with Capa Center.

Dániel Halász: Borderland (2019–2020)

The photo is silent. It is not accompanied by a soundtrack when it affects our senses. But a healthy brain has some synesthetic ability. It can hear the sight. Like the hearing-impaired who learns to read by mouth. He sees a dog with an open mouth showing its teeth and hears a bark. The images in DánielHalász’s series Borderland are ambient recordings that do not contain a soundtrack that co-exists next to an image, but the sounds are encoded in the pixels themselves. Composers are also often inspired by ambient sound recordings, endowing the on-site recordings and atmosphere with a strong mental or emotional charge. DánielHalász is a photographer with such an attitude, and in this series he walks around the 150 km long administrative border of Budapest.

Whether this comes down to not only composing but also poetry is another matter. Imagine Budapest as a puddle that dries from its edges to its center. Its center holds some density until the last moment, droplets fleeing there, fearing disappearance. The escape of the rim. The cold places of the periphery compress the center into a smaller and smaller area like a ring. This understylized language is a poetic form of speech in Halász’s images. He does not express devout and piety, he merely states. He is not pretending, but is deeply sensitive. He is consistently documenting (he continues what he started in his village series), going after phenomena with the tenacity of a forensics expert.

We rarely see human figures in these places because few people have anything to do here. According to the anthropologist Marc Augé, non-lieu are those areas to which we are not attached. We go through them, in this way they are temporary spaces, they have no identity, so one also remains anonymous in them. The spaces of Borderland are a combination of local and global, intersecting foreign and domestic, afterlife and terrestrial life, land and water, nature and the built environment.

The uncomfortable feeling of “anything can happen” swings into these spaces. A windshield crushed with a brick turns into a cobweb. The perpetrator even left the means of his atavistic rage. An abandoned car or the victim of a revenge? The brick testifies that the perpetrator did not even want to remove the trail. It is as if the border area allows for such extreme manifestations. Its uncomfortability encourages irresponsibility. This is already a land outside of civilization. An administrative boundary. Erosion forces make it easier to challenge the edges. The boundaries of my language are the boundaries of my world. But maybe what I can show is more easily absorbed. More livable, more memorable: a non-border.

Text by Orsolya Láng


Dániel Halász’s series called Borderland was realized with the support of Budapest Photography Grant, and it is on view at Capa Center – 8F Gallery from May 04, 2021 to June 12, 2021.