Nr 37 Gál Izala street



Nr. 37 Gál Izala street

Today I’m going to write a little bit about this project that is a new addition to my portfolio but I haven’t really written or talked about it before. It is a fictitious project which I invented for my portfolio, to show similar things to those I designed, learnt and dealt with at my last workplace without breaching any rules of confidentiality.


I just wanted to do something a bit more traditional, a bit more heritage, so I decided to invent this „renovation” project and thought up this story of this old Art Nouveau style villa in Budapest (on the posh Buda side) that was taken by the state in the late 1940s and then forgotten about in the 1990s in its sorry state, until a new, wealthy owner decided to attempt to give its old glamour back – and asked me to do it of course.


The whole thing came out of a single motif – these tulips with the onion shape, that is a little Hungarian and folk arty, but also a little Turkish which is fine to be a visible influence I decided, because the Buda side, the ancient capital of Hungary, can show off quite a lot of remnants of the old Ottoman empire. Hungarian folk patterns in general were quite influenced by this period anyway, and Art Nouveau in Hungary reached there quite often for inspiration (think Ödön Lechner or the Zsolnay ceramic company – founded in Pécs, another significant city of the Ottoman rule). So that’s why I drew the tulips and the onions, because I imagined they can be somewhere in this building, just maybe on a broken tile or a garden fence or something.


I started with the ironworks – keeping in mind the regulations of all gap sizes below 100 mm (mine is about 99 besides it’s never leaving the drawing table anyway so I decided it’s a pass). Then I turned them upside down and used that rectangular shape too to create a plaster moulding pattern, maybe for a wall, maybe for a ceiling. Then – since the rectangular shapes are now there, it’s wide enough to create a window or a glass panel, with a frosted/sandblasted pattern of the same motif – and then I crowned it with the two rugs. I love rugs. I love the texture and the warmth and that no matter where you place one, they can completely change the interior.


One rug I only wanted to give a border, but in a modern sort of Art Nouveau way, that plays with the rectangles I previously placed elsewhere too, and then there is the dramatic smaller one, which I first thought could be a good wallpaper pattern but then everything would have the same pattern and that’s too samey samey – this is a domestic space, not a branded interior, and someone will furnish it with their own style and their kids will run around and  a flat-screen TV will be somewhere. It’s a home to be lived in so it cannot be too sterile or massively revivalist. It just has to be nice, and in line with itself. I know that „character” comes from many other things as well, not just some surface patterns inside or out, but what I attempted was just to bring the building together with its past, and its environment outside, on this street, in this city with the help of the designs I created from these couple of motifs. That’s what design can do, that’s what I can do, which is why I wanted to make this whole thing, I hope it makes sense.