The Horse and Art Research initiative is a unique residency program since 2015 and was established for those interested in combining equine knowledge and visual arts. We are looking for artists, art historians and researchers, who are interested in horses and the place of the horse in art, however we also welcome riders, who are not artists but are open for it. The short (1 or 2 week duration) intensive summer courses include theory, lectures, talks and discussions, daily practice and lessons of horsemanship, horsearchery and riding, as well as there is an opportunity to make studio based work.
We began from the point that riding is art. The representation of man and horse developed in parallel in the history of art, with horses appearing repeatedly in contemporary art too. Therefore we thought we would initiate an international discourse around the Horse and Art. The interest was greater, than we expected and after the success of the program in 2015, we decided to continue the project with the aim of further depth. We plan to organise the program regularly with different research themes each year. It is our intention to offer the opportunities for artists with practices coming from both western- and eastern traditions and to open up connections for artists, riders and researchers internationally with the possibility of developing professional collaborations. We would also like to explore points of connection between equine culture, art and sustainable development issues.
The first Horse and Art program was held in August 2015 in Barnag with international participants. Artists from nine countries arrived with different kinds of art backgrounds, such as fine art, design and contemporary dance. We organise the program yearly since. For each program we can offer places for up to ten participants. Accommodation is offered in traditional yurts in rural settings. In our new Lovarda Galéria (Arena Gallery) there is the possibility to make exhibitions. For participation the knowledge of English language is necessary.
Program leaders are Szmrecsányi Veszely Beáta, artist and researcher and Szmrecsányi Márton, horse trainer and horsearcher. They worked together on several equine- and art collaborations since 2006. They live in Barnag with their three children and horses since 2009.
His old dream came true, when in 2009 he moved to Barnag with his family, so that he could live and work with his horses at his own place and land. Leaving behind his individual career he devoted his life within horsearchery for teaching and for the development of the horsearchery community. He is riding since childhood and he is practicing horsearchery since approximately 20 years, although he finished his studies as a computer engineer and as an economist. In the past ten years he is practicing natural horsemanship. He completed the Parelli courses at the Lovas Élet Iskola upto Level 3. He is a licenced riding instructor. He learned at several vocational training courses, such as craniosacral osteopathy and the basics of osteopathy for horses from Bettina Pratt. At the clinics of Honza Blaha he learned line free collection and the basics of line free dressage. He is member of the Kassai Horsearchery School since 2005 and since 2008 he is one of the leaders of the school, in October 2019 he received the title of Kán. The Szmrecsányi team has 15 official members at present, has a beginners group and a large team of children. He is keeping training sessions in Barnag daily. He is holding clinics nationally and internationally regularly. He represented Hungary at a number of international competitions, such as the World Cup in Jordan, the European Championship in Verőce, the KHOW World Cup in Kaposmérő and at shows, horse shows, such as the Nemzeti Vágta (National Galopp) at the Budapest Hero Square, the OTP Bank Show Jumping World Cup in the Papp László Sportsarena, the Equifest at the Hungexpo Budapest or the Mercedes CSI in Zürich, Switzerland. He collaborated with his wife Szmrecsányi-Veszely Beáta at a number of art performances and events involving live horses. He is a riding teacher at the National Ridingacademy (Nemzeti Lovasakadémia).
Kassai Equestrian Archery School - Szmrecsányi Kánság www.szmrecsanyi.hu
She completed her studies at the Painting Department and at the Intermedia Department of the Hungarian Academy of Fine Arts in Budapest, later she gained an MA in Fine Art at Goldsmiths College, University of London in 2000. She started research in arts there too. She was visiting tutor and lecturer at a number of art colleges in Hungary and in the UK. She was living away from her home country for eight years, first in Glasgow, Scotland, where she was tutor at the Painting Department at the Glasgow School of Art and later in London, England, where she became an active participant of the international art world. She moved back home in 2004 and she was the co-founder and the director of TIPP, a collaborative research initiative between Goldsmiths College, London and the Hungarian Academy of Fine Arts. TIPP, Tihany International Postgraduate Program was running for five years successully at the Tihany Residency of the Hungarian Academy of Fine Arts. She was showing her works at several solo- and group exhibitions internationally. Her most important shows include "Arrivals" at the Modern Art Oxford in 2007, other shows in the Royal Castle in Pargue, the Secession in Vienna, the ICA, Chisenhale Gallery, Austrian Cultural Forum in London, the Cornerhouse Manchester, Project Art Center Dublin, in private galleries and in public museums in Belfast, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Saint Etienne in France, Vienna, Berlin, Tokyo, New York, Milan, as well as in the Kunsthalle Budapest, Ernst Museum Budapest and the Museum of Contemporary Art-Museum Ludwig in Budapest, where her works are represented in the national collection. Her works are also included in other public collections, such as the Albertina in Vienna, Neue Galerie in Graz, the Hiscox Arts Collection and Projects in London and in a number of private collections. She received grants and fellowships, such as the Derkovits Fellowship of the Hungarian Ministry of Culture, grants of the Scottish Arts Council, the London Arts and the British Academy. The central problematics of her works are the complexities of the horse-man relationship since her universitiy years, back to 1992 until today. She defended her doctoral thesis at the Hungarian Academy of Fine Arts in Budapest in 2017 with Summa Cum Laude degree. She is riding since childhood and she is a member of the Kassai Horsearchery School since 2005 and the Hungarian National Riding Academy since 2018.
One of the most beautiful small villages of the Balaton-Upperland in Western Hungary is the village of Barnag. The first notes of the village remained from 1082. The village was assets firstly of the Kinizsis, later of the Zichy family. A number of families settled in Barnag from South Germany in the 18th century and locals distinct two parts of the village, German- and Hungarian Barnag until today. Behind the Saint Martin church, a beautiful calvary was built, protected by the Hungarian Heritage. The paintings in the calvary were remade by Somogyi Győző, Kossuth Prize winner Hungarian artist. A dirtroad is leading from the village through the land of the Natural Heritage Park to the Zádor vár, ruins of a fort from the middle ages, which can be a lovely excursion for tourists. Barnag has 120 residents and one main street. It is situated ca. 15 minutes by car from the university town of Veszprém, from Lake Balaton, from Balatonfüred, from Tihany Penninsula, one of the favorit holiday locations of Hungarians and tourists coming from abroad.
Accommodation in rural life settings is offered in simple Hungarian style yurts. There are two bathrooms and a summer kitchen available for the participants, as well as a large old barn, where we hold our discussions, talks and lectures. Summer studios and a printmaking workshop is ready for the artists to use. We can accommodate upto 10 people for a program. In the attick of the renovated old barn building, we created two guest rooms with a view to the garden, One of the rooms has its own studio space, ideal to work in.