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by Anna Molnár

Bölcső is an animated movie made in collaboration with a song from Hungarian artist, Дeva. The inspiration of the project comes from feminine folkloric aesthetics from Hungary, where Anna grew up and embedded these elements into her visual language as an illustrator. The film is a visual exploration about the transformation of a soul, growing in a rhythmical trance together with the atmospheric sounds of the music. Bölcső, the word for cradle in the artist’s language, is referring to the notion of coming back to one’s roots and finding comfort there.

My grandmother Julianna, is 92 this year. She lives in her little farmhouse in my hometown village, she was born in, back in 1930 between two word wars. She lived through wartime, a failed revolution, communist regime and heavy generational trauma. I got to know her as a warm, positive woman with exceptional humour and the strong female role model in my life. I remember her telling me how she and her sisters would come together, embroider and sing in the evenings, before anyone in the village had television or a car.

This collective feminine craft was their way of meditation and helping themselves through hard and trying times. She told me that the repetitive embroidery patterns and songs would clear her head of worry. This craft by a circle of women is perceived by modern society as a housewife hobby from old times, and stripped of value in the design world, however was a strong act of resilience, serving as a grounding force and union between these women, while creating something lasting and beautiful. This is what I would like to convey in my work and what inspired me for this project. 

PINGÁL is a Hungarian word for painting delicate ornaments

The practice of creating these patterns whether by painting or embroidering them, also serves as a therapeutic craft. I discovered this through my grandmother’s stories, my research findings and mostly throughout my own experience. I’ve been scolded for doodling flowers instead of “focusing” on the blackboard as early as elementary school. And I know now it served a soothing effect on my anxiety and adhd.

Today I incorporate these patterns in my work as an Illustrator, as an act of reconnecting to my roots, empowering the collective feminine craft I was thought to dismiss from my designs, and as a powerful therapeutic tool.

PINGÁLJ WITH ME is a social initiative to invite others to join me and participate in a collective art therapy practice. You can do this at my exhibition at WDKA.

For more info find me at