(1880 - 1980)
39.5 x 39.5 cm.
Aquatint on paper
Signed bottom right: Maurer 1970; Signed bottom left: P6
Dóra Maurer is a leading figure of the Hungarian neo-avant-garde generation and an internationally renowned artist. Between 1955 and 1961 she studied graphic art at the Hungarian Academy of Fine Arts. Her diploma thesis (Mindennapok, 1961), consisting of eight pages, was rejected by the examination board for being too modern and she did not receive a diploma. Maurer saw etching as a medium, and János Major introduced her to its experimental forms. Her early works are characterised by an unusual treatment of the surface of the copper plate, the development of special textures and the richness of the surface, which she created by multiple etching, the imprinting of foreign materials and the layering of different textures in a montage. The surfaces of her etchings are not lines, but biomorphic formations, which make Mauerer's work akin to the Surrealists and the bioromanticism of Ernő Kállai. In 1963 she went on a study trip to Italy. His series of etchings Fiore (1963-1964), Pompeii (1964) and Metamorphosis are linked to this memory and experience.
Maurer's so-called 'psychorealistic' period came to an end in the mid-1960s. The range of her tools was extended to include collages, various applications (e.g. hair), folds and surfaces covering the drawings (e.g. PB O, Mountain and Man, 1969). P6, which is the international genre designation for small graphic works, is a flatbed photographic mechanical reproduction process. It is based on lithography, which was discovered in 1797 by Alois Senefelder. Initially coated with asphalt, later with bichromate albumen, the lithographic stone was exposed from a paper negative, the fine porous structure of the stone providing the screen dots. The process is based on the property of limestone that the capillaries of the stone can absorb and retain both water and fat, but either one or the other. Photolithography was later replaced by zincography because of the difficulty in obtaining limestone from Solnhofen. Photolithography was mainly suited for the reproduction of line drawings (engravings, maps, manuscripts), less so for photographs. Reproduced graphics are a slice of Dóra Maurer's oeuvre that has given rise to pictorial ideas that have had an impact on her entire career.
Around 1970, Maurer's graphic work underwent a turning point: instead of the image etched on a plate, the process and action of printing itself, and printing as a document, became the focus of her artistic experiments. Between 1975-77, she held visuality workshops at Ganz-MÁVAG with Miklós Erdély under the title of "Exercises in Creativity". Between 1981 and 1983 she led a photography and film course (InDiGó group) at the Museum of Fine Arts. From the 1980s onwards, colour and space became the focus of her interest, while from the 1990s painting dominated, and she was concerned with the problems of the curved plane and space. In 2002, Dóra Maurer and Tibor Gáyor had an exhibition at the Municipal Art Museum in Győr, Hungary, in 2019, the Tate Modern in London presented 35 of her works, in 2022, Vienna's second largest building, the Ringturm, was completely covered by a Maurer painting, and most recently, renowned Hungarian clothing designer NUBU has evoked the artist's work with its latest collection.