“I am the only artist in Hungary who has painted on both sides of the Berlin Wall.”

Artist’s video, 2021

The artist Sándor Györffy was born in Kapolcs (Hungary) in 1951 and lives and works in Budapest. His painting “Mauerdurchbruch” (Wall breakthrough) shows two heads composed of geometric forms that have come to life and are breaking down the barrier between them by their fiery exchange. Györffy was the only Hungarian artist to paint on both sides of the Wall.

Sándor Györffy in the interview

The title and meaning of his artwork

Wall artists in West Berlin before 1989

How did you get involved in the East Side Gallery?

Inspiration for his artwork

On restoring the East Side Gallery

Györffy’s painting “Mauerdurchbruch” (Wall breakthrough), also known as “Feuerköpfe” (Hotheads), shows geometric forms in an abstract style. The head on the left side of the painting seems to be spitting a yellow triangle at the head on the right, breaking through the black bar in the centre of the picture. The heads stand for East and West Berlin. The bar symbolises the Berlin Wall, which is being smashed by the force of language.

Györffy moved to Budapest as a young man to develop his skills as an artist through independent study and in art groups. In 1988 he received a scholarship from Künstlerhaus Bethanien in West Berlin. While here, he painted on the west side of the Berlin Wall; the following year he painted on the east side. His oeuvre includes graphics, paintings, sculptures, installations, and land art. He has worked abroad on several occasions and now lives and works in Budapest.

Additional information:

Find more information on Sándor Györffy on the artist’s website: http://www.gyorffy-art.com/

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