Windless, Variations for the EU Flag Nr.1., 2016
Long: 300 cm x High: 200 cm x Depth: 30 cm
Wall painting: colour Pantone Reflex Blue, RGB:
0/51/153; 12 kitchen knives
installation view, 17th Art Biennial, Serbia, 2016
Photos © Vladimir Pavic

Multi-colored kitchen knives create a fierce circle in her wall installation Windless, Variations for the EU Flag Nr. 1, adding to the immigration-based lexicon established by Oravecz in Welcome to the EU, 2016. Troubled by her native Hungary’s approach to handling mass immigration populations in 2015, as it built a barrier along its border with Serbia, Oravecz stages an analogic “welcome” akin to the barbed-wire borders. The erection of such a wall within a European context necessarily evokes The Berlin Wall (1961-1989) and its interstitial symbolism between democracy and communism. Berlin, Oravecz’s new home, with its historical erection of the wall, racial prejudice, and nationalism eerily mirrors Hungary’s present-day stance. Here, Variations for the EU Flag Nr. 1 positions domestic items as weapons along a circular track, revealing a symbolic ideological inner circle that characterizes not only Hungary’s response to immigrants and refugees attempting to enter, but the exclusionary perspective of the EU at large.
(Laurel McLaughlin)