In this latest exhibition Baloghy has painted scenes that are instantly recognisable to Aucklander’s, however, they are not truly realistic in the photographic sense.
Elements of the views have been altered and moved around – the most obvious example being the enlargement of Rangitoto’s volcanic cone which looms broodingly over the city, reminding viewers of the primal forces that have shaped the place they inhabit.
There are other changes as well – the backgrounds (usually the city) have been brought closer, resulting in an experience of almost claustrophobic intensity of detail. The effect of all these changes is to make familiar scenes slightly alien, alternative realities – similar to the ones we inhabit, but not quite.
Baloghy understands the psychology of ‘seeing’ – what we actually see as opposed to what we think we see. Thus he is able to manipulate, emphasise and eliminate details here and there, all for the dramatic effect of showing us a more compressed and intense version of what we see every day.
The forms of the City have always held a fascination for Baloghy, beginning with his first photographs of the inner urban areas in the 1970s while still at Elam Art School. Since then Auckland has been torn apart and rebuilt several times and Baloghy has quietly chronicled these changes.
Baloghy has largely turned his back on the traditional magnificent landforms of the New Zealand landscape. Known for his representation of historical landmarks and buildings, Baloghy prefers the grit and from of the man made environment, complete with rubbish in the gutters and contemporary cars.