Urban spaces of periphery, or the rediscovery of the edges of Budapest


In the posturban sensibility, the margins have entirely invaded the center and disseminated its focus.
Anthony Vidler

A handful of shop windows on Budapest Nagykörút underwent a spectacular change in October, 2006. These long-empty premises – testifying the cruel urban consequences of the restructuring of retail- trade – now housed a number of artistic projects in the framework of Körút Fesztivál for a few weeks1 . In March, 2006, an empty textile-shop in downtown Pest, saw the organization of a bustling two-day exhibition by mature students of Fine Arts University2 . As a part of Urban Potentials project in July, Miklós Mécs installed his “Stethoscope Shop window” into a shop front opened up for tendering by the local Municipality3 . The Information Point of 2005 Budapest Autumn Festival was located in a former transformator house, in the temporary cultural centre, AKKU. The festival-centre of 2004 Festival happened to move into an abandoned cinema called Atrium. All the while every month is witness to a multitude of pubs, galleries and studios opening or closing in abandoned buildings.

Such recycling of premises built for different purposes is not equal to the physical expansion of contemporary art scene, or their conscious contribution to city-revitalization. The transformation of shop windows , shops, atriums and foyers into venues of art naturally facilitates a more intensive communication with the audience. But the choice of locations point to different reasons and thoughts, namely urban presence and recycling. Shop windows and shops are not only easily visible, available places, but places originally intended for a different use , now ignored, derelict , forgotten. Their special status, the extra meaning these venues acquired by their emptiness and change of function is closely connected to an urban problem, concerning a whole generation , the phenomenon of peripheral spaces.

Although the festivals mentioned above have similarities with the alternative occupation of public spaces of the nineties – they also found their spatial relevance by filling unused places with meaningful content, and attaching them to the cultural circulation – their structure is fundamentally different from those. These actions – realized through long negotiations with the local municipality – are on completely different terms with their venues and the image of spontaneity connected to them, then, say the programs of Újlak-group active around the time of the political transition.

The group of artists called Újlak, that occupied first the Hungária Bath, then the Újlak Cinema at Óbuda to organize exhibitions and open workshops, has made a radical movement, previously unimaginable in Budapest. Their effort to find an artistic position free of any demands of market or power found its way in the run-down, empty and mouldable urban interiors, and did not lose its catalytic strength when they acquired a few places in Tűzoltó street in 1991 in a legal manner.

Though the group saw empty buildings as the only open possibilities, these spaces – contrary to the “white cube” of the institutionalized exhibition spaces – had a close connection to the image and practice of community, out-of-structure independence and the free forming of space. Years after the dissolution of Újlak-group, around the end of the nineties, cultural and alternative functions planted into abandoned buildings gave birth to a peculiar style, with pubs, protocol-visits and fashion -shows; retaining the image of pioneer occupation, while pushing the boundaries of institutionalization and spontaneity further away to the edges.

While these transitional, empty places continue to proliferate in Budapest, begging for being used, the position of the independent artist with a social relevance is more problematic then ever. Our relation to these abandoned places, fallen out of the social and economic circulation, does not only talk about the dynamism of contemporary attention, but its transformations also reveal the process of the institutionalization of the art-scene.

The city and the urban space have acquired a distinct importance in artistic thinking and in reflections about contemporary culture from the second half of the nineties. The emergence of the city as a subject is explained by two phenomena: economic and social processes concentrated more and more economic and political power into big cities,making these cities carriers of an ever renewing symbolic stock. Cities also become the landscapes of the sharpest social differences : the close co-existence of very different groups of people creates brand new contrasts and ruptures that inevitably draw the attention of the free energies of social-scientific interest, able to define discourses.

On the other hand, cities are phrased as cultural milieus in contemporary thinking: as the most important fields of identification they eclipse nation-state, this traditional form of self-identification. In the midst of the creation and solidification of economic and cultural networks, it is quite natural to observe a new strengthening of locale, the conscious search for features that differentiate.

Finally cities emerge in contemporary imagination as inexhaustible sources of inspiration. The ever renewing and constantly transforming urban space offers endless possibilities to arrive , to enter , and to approach . Still, narratives generated by positions of power – aiming to channel city-representations into well-defined messages – traditionally put the stress on the iconic, the familiar, the transparent and the predictable. However , there are a number of problems with this kind of banal image of the city. Homogenized cities, optimized for an exact kind of target-audience fill up the horizon, and leave no space for peripheral situations defying the standardized image.

When facing the problems of the city, critical approach works on the deconstruct ion of these homogeneous and banal images. Contemporary film, photography , fine arts, and even design and fashion defining itself as critical, experimental or alternative, takes a detour to approach the city avoid ing mainstream experience, and focuses on difficult-to- reach , secret, spooky or forgotten places, situations, personalities. This kind of artistic and scholarly activity searching for chronologic, spatial or social peripheries is not marginal at all, or at least its significance grows over its own marginality . The eye scanning the peripheries is not simply the harmless expression of amateur interest, staying within the close quarters of its cultural square. Its effects reach much further: a peculiar desire for the places and the possibilities of the periphery emerges in everyday life, and while it takes roots in mainstream imagination, it emerges as a potent cultural phenomenon in both economic and political spheres. This intensive attention would change the nature of the periphery in turn. I shall elaborate on this phenomenon below: where does this increased interest toward ruins and abandoned places, firewalls and vacant lots, forgotten and transitory spaces originate from and what happens to these marginal spaces after becoming the centre of attention.

Post-socialist and post-industrial spaces

Budapest searching for its new identity in the nineties, found itself in a peculiar position : official narratives found the city‘s past references in the turn-of-the-century liberal metropolis, while at the same time, they tried to phrase Budapest as a dynamic, future-oriented city. This narrative is of course a bold simplification of the transformation, post-socialist Budapest underwent. In cities transforming at a breathtaking speed after the change, like Budapest, totally different functions and ways of usage fell next to each other unnoticed in the commercializing spaces left behind by the retreating state-planning, building up peculiar borderlines between the spaces of remembrance and progression, informality and control, secret and transparency. The ambivalence of these boundaries was further fed and anchored by uneven infrastructural development, and the views and locations of transitory cityscapes created and reproduced by forced speed city-rehabilitation, namely vacant lots and fire-walls, defaced underpasses and dilapidated tunnels, derelict buildings and deserted factories.

It was only natural for the millennial artistic thought freshly rediscovering social sensitivity to find its own alternative vision of Budapest in these paradigmatic elements and locations. The desire to rediscover the city drives artists, cultural workers and thinkers looking for visual experience, nostalgia and adventure to the same situations combining social marginalities with chronological and local marginalities. Ruins oddly serving the optimism of city-rehabilitation testify the dynamics of post-socialist metamorphosis and social factors, just as well as cranes prancing all around the city.

Directors of the last decade of the twentieth and the first decade of the twenty-first century made very different films on Budapest, illustrating the evolution of our relation to ruins, derelict and forgotten, like Roncsfilm, I love Budapest, Fekete Kefe, Dealer and Kontroll, or the series of photographs reinterpreting the remains of the industrial world. Like József Hajdú’s Industrial Landscape, Imre Benkő’s Steel City and the photographies of Tamás Urbán. These pictures and series do not stay within the boundaries of artistic representation: they have an inevitable effect on contemporary urban imagination , and make the disintegrated remains of the past paradoxically become paradigmatic places of the present, giving life to a generation of ruin-pubs, bars and cultural venues. The aesthetics of ruins has even made it to the context of national representation: one of the – unsuccessful – entries, submitted by Péter Belecz, for the competition for the content of the Hungarian Pavilion at Venice Biennale 2006 featured a firewall, as the central topic of present Budapest, or Hungarian architecture.4

The same can be told about countless places of the post-socialist countries: walled-up windows and waning quarters in Leipzig, crumbling streets at Czech industrial towns, Kladno, or Usti nad Labem, the new cities of Poland, the factory-complex at Nowa Huta evokes fear and awe, melancholy and nostalgia, as they move from social periphery to the focus of cultural attention.

However, if you try to view it from a wider perspective, it becomes evident, that this intensive cultural attention toward secret, derelict and peripheral spaces and situations is not exclusively characteristic of post- socialist cities. The peculiar value attributed to modern ruins and abandoned places in the last decades is not simply a compensatory answer given to socialist utopia and its failed totalitarian concept of space.

On the contrary: this sensitivity roots in a wider visual and discursive tradition – closely connected to the modern demand for space as a tool in creating a rational and transparent society – as old as modernity, being one of its main constituent parts .

Remembrance and experience – the „Architectural Uncanny“

The complex relationship contemporary culture has built up toward ruins and unused architectural structures has a lot to do with the search for an own past, and identity, the motif of the continuity of self. Industrial museums, local history collections, national heritage institutes and documentary enterprises all work and think according to the demands of distinct interpretation of authenticity. But while these mechanisms aim for conservation and the torsion-free representation of the past, even those “hard” scientific researches like industrial archaeology feed on quite irrational and emotional motivations like awe, admiration , mourning:

“Trust in future was badly shaken in the wake of the changes of the seventies, causing people to turn back to the past fleeing their sense of insecurity. This turn played an important role in the development of the notion of industrial heritage. Mourning the irrevocable closure of the recent past made industrial heritage – at least the part that is still around – valuable, and it gave birth to the pressing need for their preservation (…) The reputation of the heritage of traditional industries was further augmented by the appreciation of old trade knowledge in the face of alienated technologies incomprehensible for the layman.”5

The emotional structure evolved in the relation to industrial heritage – in many ways connected to the nostalgia for derelict, abandoned, peripheral places – is defined by the feeling of evanescence, a symbolic desire for the consumption of ruins, old buildings and machines, and natural or artificial re-ruralization or landscape-ization of once urban spaces.6 These relations are realized through necessary social and chronological transpositions, differences and distances that delegate phenomena belonging to the sphere of work or poverty to the sphere of adventure and aesthetics. This is the process in which memory-work solving authenticity into fiction makes industry, production and work, these extremely important utopias of modernity the subject of peculiar desire, and emotional relations.

The openly institutionalizing process of rendering memories into the sphere of heritage was prepared by the exploration and rehabilitation of peripheral spaces by fine arts, film- industry and photography, naturally followed by the political and economic utilization and annexation of the rediscovered geography of this experience and adventure. Derelict, forsaken places as utopic or distopic bubbles not only store unique possibilities of experiencing urban spaces, but they own an exotic potential, that can act as the engine behind tourism and real-estate business, and can easily hijack artistic and cultural projects with a social mission.

So it seems, that not only films, art-projects, alternative city-tours, but also large -scale political and real-estate campaigns situate themselves into t his aesthetics originating from post-industrialist society’s evolved relation to city and space , appearing as a special reincarnation of metropolis-myths. The process that raises industrial buildings and scattered ruins, firewalls and vacant lots, tunnels and alleys into the focus of attention is connected to a general attraction to marginal places which might be named “rust- aesthetics ” adequately. The abandoned, the unused, the forgotten do not only appear in our thinking as places of possibilities outside the structure, but as territories of nostalgia and difference. The pragmatic approach searching for the possibilities of usage and recycling is slowly imbued by considerations of rust-aesthetics, and the emerging symbolic value of these spaces either enhances or decreases their practical usability.

Abandoned places and ruins, just like vacant lots, alleys and tunnels unleash the thread s of memory and ignite the imagination at the same time . Marjetica Potrc, when elaborating on the public spaces of contemporary cities, attributes special significance to empty spaces:

"I predict another shift of feelings within contemporary cities, this time regading empty space. Empty space on earth is contracting, being lost to the fast developing metropolis, which on its own produces more empty space, embodied in urban voids. (…) Though it seems everyone considers that it’s really bad to look at a deserted house from one’s own dining room window, this turned out to be a pleasurable experience for tourists touring the bombed Sarajevo. They enjoyed filming and photographing the disaster, which of course was not their own.”7 The relation to abandoned places, ruins and firewalls is based on the same kind of distance: our perception distances them from their pragmatic function, elevating them to the level of aesthetic objects, we confide memories to them, and we attach fears and hopes to them.

This paradox – the fear and the desire felt toward the dark, unlit corners of the transparent, controlled space – is emphasized by contemporary theories of space of a psychological inspiration which rediscover one of the most important motives behind urban discourses and processes: desire. Consumer society spreading commodification to all walks of life makes fashion – the desire to consume – hungry for spaces as well as objects.

Anthony Vidler, in his book, The Architectural Uncanny introduces this desire as the repressed subconscious of modernity: "The contemporary sensibility that sees the uncanny erupt in empty parking lots around abandoned or run-down shopping malls, in the screened trompe l’oeil of simulated space, in, that is, the wasted margins and surface appearances of postindustrial culture, this sensibility has its roots and draws its commonplaces from a long but essentially long modern tradition."8 In his train of thought, Vidler manages to point out a repressed desire behind modern efforts to transform space into a rational, transparent system. This desire yearns for the inscrutable, the obscure, that defies any systematization. This is the desire that finds its objects in abandoned houses, empty factories, vacant lots and firewalls. Spaces of periphery offer the possibility of a different order. The “invasion of alien presence” in the centre of the city offers novel sights: it turns the usual and familiar into occult and imponderable. The tension in the relationship of strange places with everyday places, marginal situations with touristic clichés, or generally periphery with centre, stems from the relative indefiniteness of the formers , their symbolic difference and interpretative distance. This relation is not constant however: with the belief in the different aspects of modern society impaired, the repressed " (…) periphery escapes its geographical location and occupies the city’s historic center, rural/natural surroundings, technological fantasies, the social utopias of postmodernity.”9

Psychologizing theories of space make new statements basically about the dialectic nature of modernity mainly from the aspect of the organization of space. In the fissures of rational organization of space and society, desires of resistance and compensation rear their heads: modernity’s demand for rationality is inseparable from its own irrational negation. Thus uncanny is interpreted as the repressed, “ pathologic reality” of modernism .10 Liberation from the utopia of planning is only possible in marginal, forgotten spaces offering the possibility of spontaneity.

Chronologic, spatial and social peripheries

The “ architectural uncanny ” as the subconscious of modernity is closely connected to the idea of ruin: Andreas Huyssen calls ruins the “secret classicism of modernity” that consciously or unconsciously prefers fragment, collage and aphorism to the totality heralded by Wincklemann, Goethe and the International Style.11 Ruins – with the ideas of catastrophe connected to them – at the same time carry the “self-criticism” of modernity, the awareness of its “dark side”, the system of chronological and spatial doubts – following modernity all the way – that is essentially the fear of nature taking over culture.12 Ruins remind us, that "the idea of progress is always already in the state of catastrophe" and that " only when such novel commodities, architectures and confident expressions to the idea of progress fall into ruin and decay does their initial promise reveal its hollowness and its frailty."13 The secret desire for the ruined, the derelict, the vacant and the peripheral haunts modernism, but it can only come out to the light and become a mass-movement, when the basic elements of enlightenment reveal their own failure, and when convictions and desires on which modern structures are based loose their appeal.

One of the sources of the present desire for abandoned buildings, crumbling firewalls and disused factories as ruins is the fear of sterility and the eternal presence of objects: "The chance for things to age and to become ruin has diminished in the age of turbo capitalism."14 That makes the experience of time especially important in urban peripheries: "Experiences of the city are at their sharpest at the point of disappearance, already dissipated by the time a story about them can be told"15

The experience of chronological marginality interlocks with that of geographical peripheries. Abandoned places can be interpreted as documents: the "failed experiments in the history of the city can be discovered in its neglected spaces (…) the urban wastelands generated by the economic recessions of the late 1970s and 1980s are no longer simply about emptiness, nor about their absence of history, their absence of anything going on; they are now haunted by ghosts that say how it might have been, if it had kept its people, its jobs"16

Still, contemporary imagination considers these places as the spaces of remembrance as well as the spaces of experience. Stepping into the space of marginality, the urban explorer moves out not only of his own territory, but of his own time as well. This traditionally subversive urban exploration, flâneurie or dérive, frustrates any authority’s banal and structured city concept with its ironic and ambivalent idea of urbanity . Though today it is already an institutionalized17 genre , its engine is still mystery, secret and adventure, and works against the continuity and coherence of urban experience. Secret always carries the idea of “unspoiled”, avoiding dominant urban narratives and everyday attention: "At the end of the 20th century secret was positive and it was desired as never before. This desire for secret places relates to perennial fantasies off the map. (…) The traveller seeks the secret hidden spaces of real life, untouched by control and mediation, where the authentic and marvellous still flourish."18 This is the real stake behind psychogeography conceptualized by situationists dreading the loss of adventure.

The conflict between controlled and chaotic space does not only emerge as a key problem in western modernity. In his book, “Praise for the shadow ”, about the significance of shadow in Japanese culture, Junichiro Tanizaki devotes a long chapter to the requirements of internal lighting.19 In the traditional Japanese room, lamps should be organized in a way, not to shed light on everything: the upper corners should be left in shadow. This is the decorative method to preserve the mysterious , the invisible and the unfathomable also inside the house: to avoid a rational, controlling light choke everything. The western equivalent of Japanese shadow is the fantasy of the haunted house that challenges the totalistic organization of space brought about by the Enlightenment . The inclusion of fissures and disorder into plans is not blasphemy ; it also appears as a necessity on an urban scale: “vandalism fed in homeopathic doses”, and “fuse-zones” all serve temporary loosening, to release the stress.20

The edges of Budapest

The sensitive eye exploring Budapest is searching for its edges, but sometimes it sets out from the edges. “Alternative city-tours” realized in an artistic context are often composed by foreign artists temporary staying in Budapest for festivals, or resident-programs, trying to map the peripheries of our everyday perception with a fresh eye. The group Ici -même from Grenoble tried to rewire the familiar geography of Budapest by recycling the capital’s everyday noises on the fall of 2005. During their painstakingly composed audio-tours, they simply blocked the view of the attendants (bandaging their eyes), putting a peripheral tool of our perception – hearing – into the centre of the experience. Lacking view, the city turned nocturnal, familiar places unravelled new dimensions, while voices and the intensified perception of different bodies created the feeling of a fragmented space in the walkers.

Abandoned buildings, peripheral places can be found usually at locations quite instable socially as well. Artistic thinking positioning itself as critical often finds the social relevance of peripheral spaces in marginal groups, stigmatized as “ the Other ”. The physical and symbolic space connecting to the Other can be called “ Elsewhere ”, standing opposed to the familiar “Here” in the minds of majority classifying urban spaces. The relationship to “ Elsewhere ” is manifold: "Repugnance and fascination are the twin poles of the process in which a political imperative to reject and eliminate the debasing ‘Low’ conflicts powerfully and unpredictably with a desire for the Other. (…) It is for this reason that what is socially peripheral is so frequently symbolically central."21 The admiration for the Other can also bring about the other’s localization, crystallization according to clichés, exotic distancing, consequently the preservation of their peripheral social position. This is the danger often pointed out by the critics of documentary and photography: while they record, they reproduce the positional difference of observer and observed.

It was exactly this kind of egzotism that challenged the group E -xplo , based in Berlin and New York , to try to reveal and deconstruct it by composing their highly -reflected conceptual city-tour of Budapest at fall, 2004. Their aim was to uncover “the unknown face of the city, its cultural and social stratification”22 to Budapesters through bus-rides. The contrasting images of the bus-ride and the narration helped to establish unique places of the city, and helped to deconstruct them at the same time. The criticism of the exotic, colonizing interest of the eye looking for the urban the Other and the Elsewhere , is in a way, the ambivalent declaration of the guilty conscience of the intellectual speaking from a paternalist position. The naïve discovery of the peripheries launches a mechanism of effects similar to the dialectics of secret: first discovery, reinterpretation, publication, then domestification, gentrification, obliteration. The “rehabilitation” of peripheral places destroys their peripheral quality: pushing the borders farther away, it integrates them.

The definitive force of egzotism, the localization of social marginality is two notions attacked by Donminic Hislop and Miklós Erhardt’s Big Hope projects. When in 1997 -98 , Saját szemmel / Inside out was made, Hislop and Erhardt gave disposable cameras to homeless people living on the streets of Budapest, and had them record and comment what they see, places they use, objects they are attached to. Big Hope’s Re: Route , made in 2002 for the Torino Biennale operates with a similarly marginal perspective. The artists asked immigrants at Torino to draw a mental map of the city, and to make photographs of the places important to them . These maps made from a unique, marginal perspective deny the universality of the perception of urban space, and the legitimacy of rationalist planning.

Secret urban reserves and appropriations

The interest showing toward spatial, social and chronological peripheries contains aesthetizing-distancing elements and critical- reflective elements. In addition, among the reasons fuelling discovery, many of them does not want to save or interpret, rather change, utilize or acquire them. Forgotten, empty spaces and situations offer special possibilities. These possibilities are measured and utilized by shop-window projects mentioned above, or Urban Potentials 2006, collecting the unused potential of urban space, not only the hidden potentials of storefronts, but that of a central square (Városháza square), the Danube-bank and a firewall. Their secret potentials were activated in their unique way: sometimes only as raising attention to their possibilities.23 The same intentions – the demand to reinterpret, utilize and fill up spaces – drive galleries dreamt up in abandoned buildings, pubs, cultural centres thriving or dying, and instant squats.24

A symbolic re-acquisition of marginal spaces is a generational ambition utilizing different tools, focusing from different perspectives: it is the result of practices of film -making, photographic and fine arts, creative and managerial intentions , and the inevitable economic and political activities.

The quick appropriation of peripheries is made possible by the unique rhythm-shift characteristic of Hungarian economical and cultural conditions. Though a number of cultural initiatives tried to acclimatize methods and examples successful in Western Europe, they were hijacked by Hungary’s different social, economic and political circumstances, and resulted in unique, mutant solutions in the midst of accelerating privatization and democratic transition.

The rapid loss or commercialization of places beyond use, but before rehabilitation is the result of this compressed transition. In the wake of this transition, the process of the city’s alternative discovery, and the realization of its hidden potentials remained incomplete, without the chance of completion: it is lost and is being constantly lost for its explorers, before their desire to acquire was satisfied. Artistic and cultural interest focusing on the peripheries of the city is followed so closely by economic and political interest that together with rust-belts, abandoned property, or inner- city slums, the imagination focusing on the periphery is instantly domesticated and gentrified. Parallel to the phenomenon of lofts and offices taming unused factory-buildings even before a market -demand appeared for these kind of properties, the short-film Mobility25 – the special prize-winner of Rotterdam Biennal, 2003 – featuring ill-lit streets, corridors, crumbling apartment houses and derelict doorways cut together in a video-clip style, was featured in the 2010 Budapest European Cultural Capital’s optimistic official campaign in 2005. Just like the originally alternative gesture of our ruin-pubs – pubs built into the courtyard of empty apartment houses – became a sophisticated tool in the hands of the investors of city-rehabilitation. 26

Urban ecologies do not only work with physical ingredients. Abandoned buildings, empty factories, forgotten underpasses, firewalls and vacant lots that seem to avoid planning and control, appear as spaces without definition, and carry the tension of unsatisfied desires, and unrealized, though realizable plans.27 Spaces of urban periphery are transitional zones existing without a legitimate reason, gaps in a rationalizing city. Blocking the fulfilment of the ever-renewing demand for the total transparency and readability of the urban space, they leave an appropriate space for the joy of discovery. They sustain the presence of secret and the accidental in the city.

While this contemporary sensitivity toward peripheries is gaining momentum, and is replacing the demand for transparency with the values of experience and interest, the domesticating nature of “rehabilitation” that destroys the mysterious , the uncanny and the crumbling counters its effects . It obliterates spontaneity sprouting in the crevices of rationality, practically realizing the modern utopia of controlling space. This danger raises the question, which is closely connected to the distress felt toward the institutionalization of art: how could the places of periphery be redefined , without bereaving them of their insecurity and hope?28 How could spontaneity be planned ?

Translated by: Danial Bart


Belecz, Péter: Tűzfalak. See: http://epiteszforum.hu/?q=node/1511

Baker, Phil: Secret City. Psychogeography and the End of London. In: Joe Kerr&Andrew Gibson (edit.): London from Punk to Blair. London, 2003. p. 30.

Csatlós, Judit: Bevezetés a Lumen Galéria katalógusához. Budapest, 2005.

Hetherington, Kevin: Memories of capitalism: cities, phantasmagoria and arcades. In: Journal of urban and Regional Research 2005/1. p. 191.

Huyssen, Andreas: Nostalgia for Ruins. In: grey room 23, Spring 2006 . MIT, Cambridge

Nadel, Sara&Carles Puig: Planning on the Periphery. Barcelona, 2002. p.14.

Németh, Györgyi: Ipari örökség és városkép. In: Regio 2005 /3. p. 32.

Pile, Steve: The problem of London or how to explore the moods of the city. In: Neil Leach (edit.): The Hieroglyphics of Space . London&New York, 2001 . p: 205.

Potrc, Marjetica: Public Space in Contemporary City. In: Florian Matzner (ed.): Public Art, Kunst in öffentlichen Raum. München, 2001.

Stallybrass, Peter &Allon White: The Politics and Poetics of Transgression. Ithaca, 1986. p.5.

Robert Strachan&Sara Cohen : Music Cultures. In: Philipp Oswalt ( edit .): Shrinking Cities. Ostfildern-Ruit, 2005.

Tanizaki, Junichiro: L’éloge de l’ombre. Paris, 1986.

Tonnelat, Stéphane: Interstices urbains. Les mobilités des terrain délaissés de l’aménagement. In: Chimeres 52/2004.

Vidler, Anthony: Posturbanism. In: The Architectural Uncanny. Cambridge-London, MIT Press, 1992. 177-186. p.184.

Vidler, Anthony: Fantasy, the Uncanny and Surrealist Theories of Architecture. In. Papers of Surrrealism, 2003/1.

West, Bob: The making of the English working past. In: Rober Mumley (edit.): The Museum Time-Machine. London&New York, 1988 . p.39.

Zinganel, Michael: Vandalism as a Productive Force. In: Philipp Oswalt (edit.): Shrinking Cities. Ostfildern-Ruit, 2005.



Benedek Fliegauf: Dealer, 2005.

Tibor Gulyás és Balázs Irimiás: Mobility, 2003

Ágnes Incze: I love you Budapest, 2001.

Nimród Antal : Kontroll, 2003.

György Szomjas: Roncsfilm, 1992.

Roland Vranik: Fekete kefe, 2005.

Online references

E-Xplo: www.exindex.hu/index.php?l=hu&t=kritika&tf=exploration.html

Ici-même: www.icimeme.org

Big Hope: www.bighope.hu

Boulevard Festival : www.korutfesztival. hu

Urban Potentials: www.up-budapest.hu


1 See: www.korutfesztival.hu

2 The title of the exhibition was „ Kunsthaus FMR no1”, its organizer was Vass Nicolas Esteban.

3 See: www.up-budapest.hu

4 Péter Belecz: Firewalls. See: http://epiteszforum.hu/?q=node/1511

This Hungarian Biennale-project, Firewalls interpreted the pavilion as a vacant lot, and envisioned a crashing-ball hanging on chains between the firewalls, as a typical contemporary architectural tool.

5 Györgyi Németh: Industrial Heritage and city-scape. In: Regio 2005/3 pp. 32.

6 Bob West : The making of the English working past. In: Rober Mumley (szerk.): The Museum Time – Machine. London&New York, 1988. Here: 39.p.

7 Marjetica Potrc: Public Space in Contemporary City. In: Florian Matzner (ed.): Public Art, Kunst in öffentlichen Raum. München, 2001.

8 Anthony Vidler: Posturbanism . In: The Architectural Uncanny. Cambridge-London, MIT Press, 1992. 177-186. Here: 184. p.

9 Sara Nadel&Carles Puig: Planning on the Periphery. Barcelona, 2002. Here: 14.p.

10 Anthony Vidler: Fantasy , the Uncanny and Surrealist Theories of Architecture. In. Papers of Surrrealism, 2003/1.

11 Andreas Huyssen: Nostalgia for Ruins. In: grey room 23, Spring 2006. MIT , Cambridge

12 Andreas Huyssen : s.s.

13 Kevin Hetherington: Memories of capitalism : cities, phantasmagoria and arcades . In: Journal of urban and Regional Research 2005/1. Here: 191.p.

14 Andreas Huyssen: i.m. Here: 10.p.

15 Steve Pile : The problem of London or how to explore the moods of the city . In: Neil Leach (edit.): The Hieroglyphics of Space . London&New York, 2001. Here: 205.p.

16 Steve Pile: s.s.. Here: 207.p.

17 see: hundreds of „urban exploration” sites on the Internet

18 Phil Baker : Secret City . Psychogeography and the End of London. In: Joe Kerr&Andrew Gibson (edit): London from Punk to Blair . London, 2003. Here: 30.p.p.

19 Junichiro Tanizaki: L’éloge de l’ombre. Paris, 1986.

20 Michael Zinganel: Vandalism as a Productive Force. In: Philipp Oswalt (edit.): Shrinking Cities. Ostfildern-Ruit, 2005.

21 Peter Stallybrass&Allon White: The Politics and Poetics of Transgression. Ithaca, 1986. Here: 5.p.

22 see: /index.php?l=hu&t=kritika&tf=exploration.html

23 see: www.up-budapest.hu/

24 see: Judit Csatlós: Introduction to the catalogue of Lumen Gallery, Budapest, 2005.

25 Balázs Irimiás and Tibor Gulyás: Mobility. Budapest, 2003.

26 The investor behind the greatest city-rehabilitation project of Budapest, invited pubs into the only block left standing in the midst of a destroyed quarter, to fill the neighbourhood with meaning and visitors, enhancing thus the reputation of the quarter to be built and helping the sale of flats.

27 Robert Strachan&Sara Cohen: Music Cultures. In: Philipp Oswalt (edit.): Shrinking Cities. Ostfildern-Ruit, 2005.

28 Stéphane Tonnelat : Interstices urbains. Les mobilités des terrain délaissés de l’aménagement . In: Chimeres 52/2004.