The Illyés Roundabout, 2012

The encouraging success of the Illyés Gate gave birth to a decision: to broaden the circle of creators, to address the people of Budaörs and pull them into a community art process, the goal of which would be to transform one known point of the town. The location is an “unavoidable” roundabout on the main street of Budaörs, its grey, cracked concrete rampart wall, which borders the garden of the Illyés Grammar School. As creators, 247 people took part in covering the roughly 30-square-metre-sized concrete wall with an artwork combining mosaic and porcelain reliefs, and their names can be read in the clouds of the roundabout painted with cobalt-blue glaze for anyone to read in decades to come.
The main goals of the project were:
– to bring the residents of Budaörs into their own built environment by having them create a visual image there with their own hands,,
– construction of a visual focus point standing out in the town on the rampart of the roundabout,
– the creation of a new artwork in a common space, which apart from its aesthetic merits holds special value as having brought a communal artwork into being.
On its start in 2012, the creators organised six workshops held through March and April, in the course of which residents of the town got involved in the planning of the work and the crafting of the relief elements. Every participant who took part could work with their hands somewhere on a porcelain relief. The basic theme: plants and animals, which everyone chose for having a striking form or some other element.
In addition students of the Illyés Animation Course and pupils, teachers, and workers of the Illyés Grammar School took part in the work. Among many others the director of the school and the town mayor took part in the construction of the relief with their own hands. Few things could prove better that the roundabout was a genuine communal artwork, and to impress this on the people of Budaörs, than the sight in practice of locals walking with a relative, guests or friends past the site, and showing them parts, happily pointing out which part they made, or finding acquaintances’ names in the list of creators.
Some technical points of interest for the Illyés roundabout.
– Building up aThe photomosaic element involved breaking down the original photos into 34 basic colours, which with random clustering gives back the picture. – Because of this, the mosaic from close up and from far away looks completely different, and in fact only from a certain distance do the masses of coloured mosaic tiles form recognisable pictures.
– The photo mosaic used 1 x 1 centimetre glass pieces grouted with a specialist epoxy resin, an innovative material which took on the colour of the mosaic piece it was bonded to, so that the grout would not blunten the colour of the mosaic
– recycled, broken-up tile was used for mosaic – consciously building the past into the new
– the porcelain relief pieces were prepared with a specialist glaze which gains its rich deep colour at 1300 Celsius in a reduced oxygen environment, prepared with glaze
Using several techniques, plus basic materials with different properties fused together, provided a major technical challenge to overcome! The heavy porcelain elements, tile mosaic and glass mosaic had to be permanently fixed to a 30-square-metre space continually being vibrated, subject to cracking from winter ice, or roasting in the summer sun. In dealing with all this, the technical advice and continual oversight of Mapei Kft was of huge assistance. The Illyés Roundabout was presented to the people of Budaörs by István Bodóczky, Munkácsy Prize winning artist, and teacher at MOME.
The Illyés Roundabout uses the materials of porcelain, ceramic and glass to give vibrant colours which will withstand weathering, time and is The use of the appropriate basic materials ensures that the artwork will survive long decades in an unchanged state. After completion the combination of mosaic and porcelain relief doesn’t demand further maintenance, it can serve several generations, colours and overall quality unchanged. The community artwork was brought into being with the help of – besides Mapei Kft – several other firms: Interkerám Kft., Zalakerámia, Pannon Autópark, Mozaik Design Kft., Ars 2000 Bt., Fotómozaik

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