How to build a house

Commissioned to create new works for the art collection of Wienerberger, the world’s largest bricks producer, Peter Puklus included his life into the project, connecting the house and the family.

Peter Puklus, Build your house on the Rock, 2016
My previous project The Epic Love Story of a Warrior was an extensive undertaking including not only photography but sculptures, installations, videos and drawings as well. I have had several solo and group exhibitions with the project across Europe. A book with the same title was published by Self Publish, Be Happy in September 2016.
Peter Puklus, <i>Family Portrait</i>, 2016
Peter Puklus, Family Portrait, 2016
It took me almost seven years to accomplish the Warrior and I felt the urge to find a new path to follow. Early last year I was commissioned to create new works for the art collection of Wienerberger, the world’s largest producer of bricks and nr 1 on the clay roof tiles market in Europe with 202 production sites in 30 countries. This commission inspired me to be able to consciously include my biographical facts and events into my artistic practice. Recently, I had to witness a radical change in my life: to give birth to a human being is one of the greatest and bravest thing ever. I was present at the birth of both of our children, and I know – at least as a viewer – that it is a heroic thing. Sadly our society is under-estimating the importance and value of motherhood. It is a common topic that today’s women don’t have to choose between family and career (but how are they supported to do so?). While fathers are left with much fewer references to do things for which they were never prepared: providing shelter sounds like a great role but it’s a challenge too.
Peter Puklus, <i>Build your house on the Rock</i>, 2016
Peter Puklus, Build your house on the Rock, 2016
To connect the philosophy of the brick and the child sounds like a logical move. Both are the minimum units of humankind’s invention: the house and family. In general while continuing to work on this project, I am about to include the ideas of equality, heroism or sharing.


The imagined final version of the project is an exhibition containing approximately 35-50 photographs, 8-12 objects or sculptures and 1 or 2 videos as well as a book or catalogue with roughly the same content. The main goal of this project is to open a discussion (or at least to pose questions) about a topic which has existential and elemental connotations and to display, present and demonstrate its results in an abstract and artistic way.  

Peter Puklus’s The Hero Mother – How to build a house was awarded the Grand Prix Images Vevey, which is a creation-support grant for photography projects. The award, worth some 37,000 euros, enables artists to develop an original project. Puklus now has one year to complete the project which will premiere at the next Festival Images Vevey from 8 to 30 September 2018.
Peter Puklus, <i>Family portrait. Four bedposts</i>
Peter Puklus, Family portrait. Four bedposts

Peter Puklus (1980), trained at Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design (MOME) in Budapest and Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Création Industrielle in Paris, he currently lives and works in Budapest, where he is completing a PhD in Photography at MOME. In his books as well as his exhibitions, Puklus likes to focus on the narrative. He also strives to chart new territories beyond the field of photography by resorting to sculpture, drawing and video art.

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