Félegyházi Károly

felegyhazy_karoly-1-274x412As a child, I learned to play violin. My teacher held the tip of his knife under my elbow, to keep the perfect position. So I finished the music. I loved drawing, dismantling-assembling, any work of mechanic. In this way, logically, I went to the engineering polytechnics, later to the College of Applied Arts, where I graduated as industrial designer.




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In my high school time, as well as in my college time I worked in a locksmith’s workshop. My old master was forced to move three times, finally he gave up the business, offering me to take over his workshop. In this way my designer activity gradually transformed to handicraftmanship.

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As a member of the National Art Foundation, I designed and produced various objects, for example, a lamp series. For a while it worked smoothly, but later I realized that the design is not my world.

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To restore something has more manual work. I enjoy the integrated problem-solving jointly with architects, with experts in heritage monuments as commissioners. If the original is not exist, we talk over the style, the proportions, the technical solution, then I prepare it.

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At the reconstruction the president’s palace at Budapest I could produce the historical coat of arms of Hungary, and lamps, and inscriptions. For the Klotild Palace we made lamps, for the Tihany Benedictine Abbey banisters, locks, grilles. I have orders continuously, either renovation or production of authentic copies.

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The most exciting objects are the locks. I met interesting and ingenious constructions. The largest one was 30 cm about. I have private costumers as well. Those buying a country house need authentic fittings, but for a new, modern building they order elaborate wrought iron or locksmith pieces.

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A major problem in renovation of old lamps is to obtain lampshades. For these beautiful Art Noveau chandeliers I managed to find accessories. These are interesting rarities. To move up and down, there is a pole in the middle.

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Lot of things is to be amazed in his workshop. A drill stand, operated with weights instead of springs.

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And an old manual press, and a metal pressure pad in the corner. These produce the metal cones of the lampshades. Need strength and endurance.

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“I was hoping that one of my sons followed me. Instead, they became an architect, a trumpeter, a pianist. At one time I taught at the Technical School of Göd, maybe there would be pupils who capable of receiving my mastership. For about ten years, I had apprentices here in this workshop, but all defected except one.

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But, the grandchildren! I have twelve grandchildren. One, thirteen years of age, is a summer-time apprentice in my workshop. He could be ten, when we got a cartoon series of his, entitled “Four Season”. When we asked the nine-year old other, what he would like to be, he answered: “I want to be a smith, or a violinist, so live long, grandfather, please!”

28/10/2011 Budapest



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