Green Art Gallery Dubai presents “King Give Us Soldiers”by Zsolt Bodoni

By Leila Antakly

Ever since I began visiting Dubai a few years ago, I became a big fan of the art scene and am currently working on promoting and raising awareness for the artists and galleries in the up and coming industrial Al Quoz neighborhood.  One of my favorite galleries, Green Art Gallery, is currently presenting the first solo show in the region for 37 year old Hungarian painter Zsolt Bodoni. The painter uses acrylics, and oil paint that still looks freshly wet on the large and complex canvases. He draws inspiration from archives of literature, art history and music.


Butt, 2012, acrylic and oil on canvas, 115 x 75 cm

A recurring motif in his work is bringing to the forefront established systems of power, which is often symbolized through figures of animals depicted as machines and tools of war, used by the race of man in his unbending quest for power. In the case of this new series the concept of systemic education is explored in depth. Tracing the root of the word ‘education’ in Latin, which is ‘duco’, the artist ironically observes the associated connotations of the
word: “to lead or mislead, to shape, to influence”.  For the artist, systems of education have undertones that can lead towards the diminishing or even loss of individual personalities and identities, and the consequences of such practices are presented in his work as a crowd of strange, faceless people, who involuntarily become grouped under a strong militant control. 


Two, 2012, acrylic and oil on canvas, 195 x 215 cm

Play, 2012, acrylic and oil on canvas, 195 x 265 cm

Born in Élesd, Romania in 1975, Zsolt Bodoni received his MFA from the Hungarian Academy of Fine Arts in Budapest, Hungary. Solo shows include “Remastered” at Brand New Gallery, Milan, IT, “Gods and Mortals” at Mihai Nicodim Gallery, Los Angeles, CA, “Foundries of Ideologies” at Ana Cristea Gallery, New York, NY, and “Monuments” at FA Projects, London, UK. He has shown in several important group shows including Brand New gallery, Milan, IT (2011), Prague Biennale, Prague, CZ (2009, 2011), Leipzig Walkabout, Leipzig, DE (2011), Knoxville Museum of Art, Knoxville, TN (2010), Calvert 22, London, UK (2009), Plan B, Cluj, RO (2008). His work has been featured and reviewed in Art in America, Flash Art and The New York Times. In 2009 he was selected for the “Top 100 Emerging Artists” by Flash Art International. He lives and works in Budapest, Hungary.

Room, 2012, acrylic and oil on canvas, 150 x 200 cm

About the author:
Contributing Editor Leila Antakly is founder of pop culture blog Ninu Nina 
and is currently based in Dubai, UAE.


Untitled (Ants), 2012, acrylic and oil on canvas, 195 x 250 cm