© Pieter Vandermeer
BiographyEndre Kukorelly was born and raised in Budapest, where he worked as a librarian for the local Literary Museum before completing his study of Hungarian literature. In the 1980s he worked as an editor and correspondent for several literary reviews. For the past ten years he has been co-editor of the weekly review Magyar Narancs (‘Hungarian Orange’) and the Hungarian Lettre Internationale.
Literary critics were quick to acknowledge the poet Kukorelly: in 1985 he received the Hungarian Literature Prize for the best debut collection, in 1992 the Vilenica Prize and in 1993 the prestigious József-Attila Prize.
A striking feature of Kukorelly’s work is his rejection of the elements of Hungarian poetry that had been its hallmarks for centuries: the sublime and the patriottic. His language, ordinary, almost that of everyday speech, perfectly fits his subjects: commonplace, meaningless events such as a visit to the beach, or searching for a lost key.
Often his poetry and prose texts are hard to distinguish between, being so alike in form and content that most of the distinction may be in the layout.
From the perspective of an emotionless observer, Kukorelly describes that which usually remains unnoticed. But the way he does this lends unexpected significance to the insignificant, and a sense of alienation may ensue. A subtle irony, often at his own expense, is part of Kukorelly’s tone.
© Jolanta Jastrzebska (Translated by Ko Kooman)[Endre Kukorelly took part in the Poetry International Festival Rotterdam 2001. This text was written on that occasion.]
Endre Kukorelly on Lyrikline
Poems of Endre Kukorelly
LantarenVenster – Verhalenhuis Belvédère