Zalavári József

We are crammed with dogmas. The art explores how we can get rid of these. It is at the centre of today’s design. One of the basic principles is that the shape follows the function. But why the door handle is a door handle? Because it is on the door. What happens if a form is removed from the function? And what can we do with the remaining handle? Or what happens if we merge functions? When the computer was born, there was a monitor and a keyboard. Then the functions were merged, creating a new form, the touchscreen.

The same is with the cultural dogmas. Besides the numerous aesthetic ideas, such as the beauty and simplicity, the aesthetics of the surprise and sadness appeared. We can say that he ratio of these means the character of something. We used to talk about the characters of the nations: the cool North, the wise East. The „Hungarian character“ is mainly the mixture of the North-South and East-West habits. But today, thanks to the arts, among others, these cultural dogmas seem to be disappearing.

„ I studied at the Technical College of Pécs, when I frequented the Zsolnay Workshop to learn classical drawing. I got in touch with paramount teachers. I was able to acquire the culture of fine arts, to learn modelling the man. At the same time, the city of Pécs was permeated by the spirit of the Bauhaus. Ferenc Lantos’s Experimental Visual Workshop has always revealed the structures behind nature, namely the geometry. After receiving my degree in engineering, I applied to the College of Applied Arts”

Since then, he looks for ways to harmonize the design and the visual arts. He studied and taught design, first in the College, then, 15 years later, at the Technical University where the design was introduced. There was a different approach, design had to be based on engineering.

„At my first lecture of design I ask the engineering students to pick up their coats, go out and bring in the first thing what they like. It is almost certain that a blondie arrives with a yellow flower, an other of blue eyes with a blue one. One time a black-dressed real hard guy pulled up a sewage grid from the mud. What a creativity! The next task is to promote the sudden flashes between your cerebral hemispheres, to find the form for the function. For example, what can we do with a cube? At this point, even the personality is revealing. One thinks of the sugar first, an other of a dice.“

He, as an industrial designer, is looking for how he can use the people’s mindset for the design. For this, first he appraises the values what he could use to get the most out the item. For example, he used a simple hollow section in design the signpost of the Budapest bus stops. With two incisions a very simple and easily producible, multifunction structure was created, and he won the tender.

The General Electric ordered a design of a new streetlamp. To resemble to the old ones was a formal requirement, while the latest state-of-art technology was needed inside. The support arm had to bear the weight of a heavy light fixture. For the solution the idea came from the stiffening structure of the bones. The streetlamp was a success, installed in many places in this country as well.

Today’s technology offers the artist unprecented opportunities. The geometric and minimalist thinking involves new materials, uses lasers, sintering, and other industrial procedures. The structures and reliefs created in this way are generated by the tensions of the material. For the attentive observer, the lights and shadows on the surface give a strange interactive experience.




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