Semperoper Dresden

Works by Marton Perlaki

Artistic concept to publicise upcoming premieres 2023/24

The 10 motifs for the premiere posters of the 2023/24 season were selected together with the artist from his photographic portfolio to reflect the content of the respective operas or ballet evenings and made available to the Semperoper for publicity purposes.

The artist Marton Perlaki was born in Budapest in 1982. His works, which are predominantly located in the field of artistic photography, transform apparently inconspicuous and omnipresent realities to create novel and unexpected levels of meaning. Under his camera’s gaze, seemingly ordinary scenarios, familiar constellations and objects lose their at times odd, even bizarre, ubiquity to develop an inexplicably suggestive power. Inspired by cinematography as well as theatre and film art, Perlaki’s conceptual approach is rooted first and foremost in the observational exploration of his motifs, whose essence is ultimately revealed to the viewer through this photographic interpretation. 

At the beginning of his artistic career, Marton Perlaki was largely interested in graphic art. However, his focus shifted to photographic perception while studying photojournalism at the beginning of the 2000s, in particular under the influence of the work of Diane Arbus and Richard Avedon. Motivated by his family background in music and musical theatre, he later studied at Budapest’s University of Theatre and Film Arts, graduating in 2011 with a Master’s degree in cinematography. Here a passion for exploring darkroom techniques led to the artist’s impressive technical expertise, which characterises his exquisite works in the realm of photographic hyperrealism. However, Perlaki remains true to his wide-ranging artistic talents and is currently increasingly returning to his roots in graphic art.

Marton Perlaki

Marton Perlaki is a visual artist whose practice examines the minutiae of human nature and shared emotional experiences. Originally from Hungary, currently residing in London and Paris, Perlaki uses predominantly photography, including experimental darkroom processes, to present familiar scenes that are often bewildering, simple and absurd. His conceptual approach is rooted in observation and often driven by character, inspired by a background in cinematography, theatre and film. A technically astute photographer, Perlaki draws on various media to create a nuanced examination on modern life.

It is precisely this striving for perfection and the astonishing quality of his pictures that ensured the early international success of the still young artist. In 2015 one of his works was presented at London’s National Portrait Gallery; in 2016, the photographer, who has since won several awards, published his first monograph »Elemer« in collaboration with Loose Joints; and his works were featured at the solo exhibition »Bird, Bald, Book, Bubble, Brick, Potato« held at the Robert Capa Contemporary Photography Centre in Budapest. A second solo exhibition, »Soft Corners«, followed in 2020 and 2021 at the Trafo Gallery, also in the Hungarian capital. In addition to numerous exhibitions and prestigious commissions, further photo series and artworks have appeared in international publications; in 2020, Perlaki photographed the entire issue of the Süddeutsche Zeitung magazine. The publication of a second monograph by Perlaki entitled »The Third Hand« is planned for 2023.

Marton Perlaki lives and works in London and Paris.