In prose, especially fiction, Arte Povera is a tough style to sell. Iván Mándy’s late work, quintessentialized by the novella Left Behind, shares qualities with not only Arte Povera but also with the beatup Baluch nomad prayer rug you hang on your wall after giving it a good wash and overcasting its edges with brown wool. Treasures found in the dust, dusted off, begin to shine in the thoughtful beholder’s eye.
"...if you’re Hispanic you’re not expected to be clever, but interesting and exotic." – The Catalan philosopher Xavier Rubert de Ventós was the guest of his Hungarian publisher Typotex and the Cervantes Institute in Budapest on the occasion of the Hungarian release of his book Por que filosofia?
"The letter / D was the last to arrive. It played in the doorway with / a spotted kitten, took it onto its belly, played hide-and-seek around / its leg, then settled down on a broken-edged / stone bench, and for a long time could not fall asleep."
With its objects and its environment, St Stephen's Park in Budapest encapsulates the ways in which recent history was monumentalised in Hungary by various ideologies. - This introductory essay is a fitting hors d'oeuvre to the essays revolving around cultural memory, edited by a team of scholars at Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest.