MIKLÓS BÁNFFY MUSEUM
Bánffy Castle from Bonțida, one of the most spectacular noble castles in Transylvania, has a special story, whether it is about its extensive historical past or the present linked to Electric Castle. A new tab was added this year when, through the involvement of the Transilvania Trust Foundation, in collaboration with the National History Museum of Transylvania and the Hungarian National Museum in Budapest, the museum dedicated to Miklós Bánffy, the last owner of the castle, was opened.
Miklós Bánffy was a fascinatingly complex character – an avant-garde intellectual, who worked as a writer, musician, playwright, opera director, book illustrator, scenographer, director, foreign minister, editor, caricaturist, MP, art collector. He left the castle in 1944, fleeing the retreating German troops, who looted and burned the building. The castle has been in a slow restoration process for more than 20 years, 2 years ago completing the rehabilitation of the interior of the south wing with a neo-Gothic facade, where the museum dedicated to Miklós Bánffy is located.
The entire exhibition develops around the complex personality of Miklós Bánffy and the different “roles” he assumed throughout. These roles in turn intertwine in various contexts and scenarios of Miklós Bánffy’s life. The narrative thread of his life is exposed through fragments of text, images and footage. The concept is marked by the idea of fragmentation. From the moment you enter the exhibition space, the polyvalence of Miklós Bánffy’s character is highlighted, which is later broken down during the exhibition into fragments, into facets, to encompass his different personalities and realities.
The exhibition is organized in four rooms, the first being the introductory space, where the main element is the decomposed suspended installation, but which from a certain point of view reveals to the visitor in the mirror the emblematic signature of Bánffy.
The main exhibition space is thus divided to give the visitor the opportunity to focus on a single aspect of Bánffy’s life. Thus, he discovers the man writer, author of the Transylvanian Trilogy, the great novel of the Transylvanian aristocracy; the theater man, who wrote plays and created sets and costumes for the Budapest Opera and the graphic artist man, who made book illustrations. To this portrait is added that of a family man, part of the history of an important family in Transylvania.
The third space is the multimedia room that reflects a multidimensional universe, through the films made about the castle and the Bánffy family. Video content can be accessed via the tablet on the perimeter line.
Logia brings the viewer back to the post-existential reality of our character, reflecting on the changes in the castle of Bonțida and his family.
The loggia is the most interesting space in form and very well visually connected with the former baroque park. The main theme of this space is oriented towards the present day and what Miklós Bánffy left behind. One important thing is the fate of the castle and the park, the fact that they were destroyed, but also its survival and how it continues to exist and the connection with the Earl’s descendants. The existing ogiva was the perfect frame to introduce a reproduction of the creation of Nicolette Bánffy-Jelen, visual artist and granddaughter of Miklós Bánffy.
PROGRAM: interior design
SURFACE: 153 sqm
LOCATION: Bonțida, Cluj
COLLABORATORS: curator – Apor Eszter; installations – Art Bending; furniture – Nurb Concept; graphic design – Idea Plus; print – Daisler;
PHOTO: Miruna Moldovan, Hunor Bako (viewcathers)