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Exclusive online presentation by Alexandra Karakas, Ph.D. student of the Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest.

You can follow the presentation online via the following link on May 21, 2020, at 5 PM EST.


This year, Hungarian Cultural Center, New York is celebrating the 125th anniversary of Hungarian-American designer, artist, theoretical figure, and restless innovator LÁSZLÓ MOHOLY-NAGY’s birth.

In the forthcoming months, we will present a series of special online events related to Moholy-Nagy’s legacy, especially from the viewpoint of its actuality and immediacy - - in short: MOHOLY NOW!

The intellectual host of the series is DR. OLIVER A. I. BOTAR, Professor of Modern Art at the University of Manitoba.


ALEXANDRA KARAKAS will present exclusively on Hungarian Cultural Center, New York’s Facebook page a mind-bending online presentation titled The notion of universality in Moholy-Nagy’s work this Thursday. Focusing on Moholy-Nagy’s works on a metalevel, she will examine his legacy as a "bricolage approach" – referring to an attitude to use, reformulate, and redesign already existing materials, ideas, and thoughts to create new concepts.


ALEXANDRA KARAKAS started to study art and design theory in 2011 at Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design in Budapest. After that, she spent the second year of her MA studies in Dublin at the Design History Material Culture Faculty at the National College of Art and Design. Currently, she is a third-year Ph.D. student at the Department of Philosophy at Eötvös Loránd University. She is teaching research methods at Budapest University of Technology and Economics. Her research focuses on the problem of malfunction in design and technology, and how malfunction manifests in different areas of design.


Professor Botar focuses his research on early 20th century Central European Modernism (particularly the work of László Moholy-Nagy), with concentrations on art in alternative (“new”) media, and “Biocentrism” and Modernism in early-to-mid 20th-century art. He also specializes in modern Hungarian and Canadian art in general and has lectured extensively in Europe, North America, and Japan.

He has authored numerous articles and exhibition catalogs and has organized exhibitions in Canada, the US, and Hungary. He is author of Technical Detours: The Early Moholy-Nagy Reconsidered (2006; Hungarian, 2007), A Bauhausler in Canada: Andor Weininger in the 50s (2009), Biocentrism and Modernism (co-editor Isabel Wünsche, 2011), the facsimile edition of the Moholy-Nagy issue of telehor (Brno, 1936) (co-editor, Klemens Gruber, 2013), “An Art at the Mercy of Light” Recent Works by Eli Bornstein (2013), and Sensing the Future: Moholy-Nagy, Media and the Arts (2014; German Edition 2014).

Prof. Botar has been a Resident Scholar at the Canadian Centre for Architecture (Montreal), a Fellow at the Institut für Literaturwissenschaft (Berlin), and recipient of a Standard Research Grant from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. He was awarded an SSHRC Insight Grant in 2013 for the project “Training for Modernity: Moholy-Nagy and the Onslaught of the Digital.”

His exhibition, Sensing the Future: Moholy-Nagy, Media and the Arts, was shown at Plug ICA (Winnipeg) and the Bauhaus-Archiv Museum für Gestaltung (Berlin) in 2014-15.

Most recently he authored “The Biocentric Bauhaus,” which appeared as the first chapter in Charissa N. Terranova and Meredith Tromble, eds., The Routledge Companion to Biology in Art and Architecture (2016); “Biomorphism” and “László Moholy-Nagy,” online encyclopedia entries for Routledge Encyclopedia of Modernism (2016, 2018);  "Charles Sirató and the Dimensionist Manifesto,” in Vanja Malloy, ed., The Dimensionist Manfesto (The MIT Press, 2018);  “Melancholy for the Future,” Moravska Galerie Bulletin, no. 77 (2018, with Klemens Gruber); and “Expressionism in North America: The Heart and Soul of Modernism Crosses the Atlantic,”  in Isabel Wunsche, ed., Routledge Companion to World Expressionisms (2019, with Herbert R. Hartel, Jr.).

Prof. Botar is currently working on a larger project on the history of art in Winnipeg and region, 1913-1960.


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