Monogramista T·D

I’m not an author, I’m a metaphor.


If we talk about 20th century art in Slovakia, the name of Dezider Toth (1947) sure comes up amongst the first ones. He belongs to a group of artists considered to represent the intellectual and spiritual heritage of the sixties and seventies in Slovak culture, forming the unofficial art scene under politically oppressive regime of the so-called normalization. He is a conceptual and neo-conceptual artist. In 1997 he changed his name, and is known as Monogamist T·D. ever since. His work is based on painting, but he also creates minimalist objects, performs actions and land-art interventions. He is capable of both material and immaterial means of expression. His artistic language is primarily based on textual concepts, poetry and metaphors. Hence the term “visual poetry” frequently used to describe his work. The pictures and objects of the artist are playful, ironic and smart, yet lyrical, humane and filled with ambiguous contents. In the sense of conceptualism he tries to blur the lines between the art and everyday life. The viewer is invited to become more an intellectual “reader” than to perceive the artwork sensually. Still, Monogramista T.D’s works and projects are not unfamiliar or difficult to understand. They always have more than one meaning and multiple layers of interpretation, which makes them open to a wider audience. He is well known for his inclination towards Eastern philosophy and culture. Many of his works are inspired by the far-oriental influences on his thinking and his spiritual experiences, namely in the realms of Zen Buddhism.

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He has been an influential persona of the Czechoslovak artistic scene since the 70’s. Organizer and participant of alternative art scene events such as 1. Open studio, Deposit, Shift and Terrain. Author of books for children (Make a mask, Foot to foot), The Keeper of The Great Custom Officer’s Violin and The Ambassador of Argilia on Asteroid 329, director of the Nonstudio (Academy of Arts, Bratislava), lector (Faculty of Fine Arts BUT, Brno; FAMU and AVU Prague).His works are exhibited as part of the most respected galleries and institutions worldwide (e.g. Slovak national gallery, Bratislava; Art Cologne, 1993; Primera Biennial Internacional de poesia visual, Mexico City, 1985). He is a member of the art group A_R and editor of author’s books. In 2011 he published a large monography with title I´m not the author, I´m the metaphor. Since 1991 he has been teaching at the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Bratislava. In 2009 he was awarded the Tatra Bank Art Prize.