The theme for the 21st Esztergom Photography Biennial, explored by submissions from both Hungary, and abroad, was „Pars pro toto – Narrative”. A narrative – in modern Hungarian „elbeszélés,” or to use an older word,„beszély” – is the communication of an experience, observation, or mental image so as to create a visual impression. A peculiar form of expression, it can also serve as a foundation for the exchange of thoughts between individuals. Narratives can be broken down according to the types of images used and the manner in which they are applied to expression.Generally, a narrative is a depiction of something that the person conveying it regards as valuable. A narrative can be about reality; take place in an imaginary environment; consist in a world whose every facet is constructed, in a natural or man-made setting. Its environment, space, or model can form a heretofore non-existant world whose reality is simultaneously imagined and real. Its angle of observation may frame as an interrogative such features as rendering, principle focus, and presentation pars pro toto. And indeed, can a photo tell a story? Does every image imply a narrative? If so, then in what way, shape, manner? What do we say, what do we think? How does one forge images of the part and the whole? Does the part reveal the whole? Reality. Truth. These are the themes which our entries, from within Hungary and without, should treat. The contest rules on this occasion stipulated nothing as regards technique, genre, or production process. All we asked was that submissions should have something to do with photography.
Melinda Kovács, Biennial Art Director