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Opt for Water

Free admission:
April 28 – May 31, 2018
Every day 14 am – 10 pm
Other location: Valyo Kikötő – Capa Kikötő (1 Hajóállomás street, 1095 Budapest)
Curator: Gabriella Csizek

Ráckevei (Soroksári)-Duna, háttérben a Gubacsi híd, 1933 © Fortepan

 

The Capa Kikötő introduces: Opt for Water
Selection from the waterside-images of the Fortepan archive

The Danube, like other waters in Hungary, is a distinctive communal living space. One may sail on the surface, take a plunge into the water from a boat, swim ashore and catch some rays, do sports, have fun, or kiss someone on the riverbank. Members of the waterside-loving community have also been taking pictures, which – through the photographers themselves or their relatives – have made their way into another special communal sphere, namely that of the online photography collection Fortepan. Images of this exhibition were selected from this archive.

Updated monthly, Fortepan is an entirely independent, unique open-source platform that relies on the work of volunteers. The name of the archive itself denotes a form of commemoration: Fortepan was the name of photographic film used worldwide, which was fabricated in the biggest Hungarian photochemical company, Forte Photochemical Corporation in Vác. Organized into chronological order, currently there are 100 thousand photographs (principally from between 1900 and 1990) available for browsing. All the images can be downloaded in high resolution. The photographic content on the site is licensed under Creative Commons 3.0, i.e., the images can be used for any purpose (even for profit) as long as the source is indicated, together with the original donor. From time to time Fortepan images were used in several contexts like in newspapers, textbooks, postcards or theatrical stage-settings..

Fortepan has become the most favorite site of Hungarian photography lovers. More than seven hundred families have donated pictures to the project. The archive initially consisted only of pictures taken in Hungary, but it has gradually expanded to the area of the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy, and even beyond. Its fame has reached the United States as well: in 2015, the University of Northern Iowa launched a similar archive called Fortepan Iowa, where they collect pictures taken in the state of Iowa.

The images of the exhibition Opt for Water demonstrate that being on the waterside was a cherished experience of many in the past as well. In order to keep up this joyful activity, VALYO – a civil organization working in urban planning, environmental protection, and culture – does a great deal through their community-building projects.