Tamás St.Turba at Vertigo of Freedom (Schwindel der Freiheit)
19 October 2012 – 27 January 2013
Balassi Institut – Collegium Hungaricum Berlin (.CHB)
Dorotheenstraße 12, 10117 Berlin, Deutschland
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Interview with Tamás St.Turba about Statue of Liberty’s Soul W 1992.
Artists: Jakup Ferri, Ion Grigorescu, Raphaël Grisey, Jaroslav Kysa, Imre Lepsényi, Société Réaliste, IPUT / Tamás St.Turba and Ulrich Vogl
Curator: Kata Krasznahorkai
In 1992, after he had returned from his exile in Switzerland, IPUT / ST. TURBA transformed the Statue of Liberty in Budapest into a soul. He covered the 40-metre-tall statue – which had been built under the Stalinist regime on the occasion of the liberation of Budapest by the Red Army from the Nazi occupation – in a huge, white gown with two black holes for eyes and it blew there in the wind for four days above Budapest. The Statue of Liberty’s Soul remains, more then twenty years after its first appearance, a living symbol of the controversy surrounding the notion of freedom.
Tamás St.Auby (superintendent of IPUT in 1991):
„(…) In early 1991, when one fraction of the tribes from the Carpathian Basin wanted to destroy the Statue of Liberty on [Budapester] Gellért Hill and another wanted to keep it, Júlia Lorrensy, the fantastic French artist of Hungarian descent, holding a cocktail glass to her red smiling lips and forming a question mark with her black eyebrows, said to me: “What’s the point of this whole hullabaloo?! All anybody has to do is cover it in a white sheet, cut out two holes for its eyes and voilà!: there’s for them the spirit of freedom!”. Suddenly everything became clear to me and I swore right then that I would make this transformation. Laughing, we finished our drinks and leaned back contently in our leather armchairs.
(…) On 29 June 1992, the day of the Red Army’s First Farewell to Budapest, the Statue of Liberty’s Soul 1992 W was waving above the city. I only ended up changing two motifs from the original plan: First, in order to protect the rights of the artist’s personality and take into consideration
the tradition of exo-psychology, I gave the piece another name – Lorrensy still fled the country –,
and second, I replaced the eye holes with two giant painted black dots to avoid the mountain air’s corrosive effects – the public authorities had allowed the transformation, but only for four days.
(…) Finally, the transformation occurred in the last moment, in the first moment of the collapse of the Soviet Union. Such an opportunity will never arise again! – And the people who think radically different today don’t think any differently.“
(Excerpt from the Description of the Transformation – Budapest, 1 June 2002, T.St.Auby)
The 40-meter-tall Statue of Liberty on Gellért Hill in Budapest was inaugurated as the >Monument of Liberation< from the Nazi regime by the Soviet Troops in 1947. The Soviet commander had hand-picked the sculptor himself and supervised the monument's construction personally. The sculpture had, during those 45 years, become the symbol of Budapest. After 1989, many party-run and civil organisations tried to initiate the removal of the sculpture, but the effort failed as a result of popular opposition. P.S. 2: IPUT (International Parallel Union of Telecommunications) (Trust.ee in bankruptcy of IPUT : Tamás St.Turba, the Agent of NETR AF /Neo-Socialist. Realist. IPUT's Global Counter Arthist.ory-Falsifiers Front/) IPUT was founded by Tamás Szentjóby in 1968 in Budapest. It started to deal with the theme of the St.Rike in 1972 and with the Subsist.ence Level St.andard Project 1984 W (SLSP 1984W) in 1974. The dispatcher of IPUT was charged with non-art-artistic and political subversion and was sent to exile by the pseudo-socialist authority in 1974. While the SLSP 1984W-operation continued in Geneva in 1975, IPUT established the Near-East.- European Free University for West.-European Jobless People (Ast.Ronomy-, R'n'R- and St.Rike Departments). After the fall of the Iron Curtain IPUT returned to Hungary. IPUT organizes referendums against free sex in order to get the Subsistence Minimum Allocation for the Eternal Jobless People financed by the military budget. ("DOWN WITH THE ELECTION ! - LONG LIVE THE VOTE !") From 1991 the new superintendent, Tamás St.Auby (today Tamás St.Turba) is a lecturer at the Intermedia Creche of the Hungarian Mercantile-Military Penalty- University of Fine Arts. In 2001 IPUT founded NETR AF (Neo-Socialist. Realist. International Parallel Union of Telecommunication's Global Counter-Arthist.ory- Falsifiers Front), and established the Portable Intelligence Increase Museum containing ca. 1,100 digitized artworks dating between 1956 and 1976 - tolerated or forbidden at that time and neglected since. IPUT is participating in the show "Desire Freedom. Art in Europe since 1945" at the German Historical Museum with the Portable Trench for Three Persons (1969).