'Shifting sand of history on the wall'

About the author

Zsuzsanna Ardó is a visual artist, writer, photographer, editor, critic, broadcaster and translator. She runs Creatives without Borders, formerly known as The Hampstead Authors' Society.

© Zsuzsanna Ardó

Photographed by Zsuzsanna Ardó, Budapest, 1996

“To be a Hungarian is a collective neurosis” – Arthur Koestler, author of Darkness at Noon.

I took this photograph in Budapest in the mid-1990s. A new street-sign replaces an old one, but the old one remains on the wall, a big line drawn across it. To me, this photo is about the social representation of history shaping our universal consciousness and planting our orientation points. The photo is purposefully lacking in harmony: it’s uneasy, off-balance and cluttered, pulling in different directions to subvert aesthetic expectation... and yet, the woman strides on.