23. ilb 06. – 16.09.2023
Portrait Mátyás Dunajcsik
© Péter Gerocs

Mátyás Dunajcsik

The Hungarian poet, writer and translator Mátyás Dunajcsik was born in 1983 in Budapest. In 2011, he completed his studies at Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest with a degree in aesthetics (art theory) and French language and literature.

Around 2000 he began publishing poetry and prose as well as essays – for example, on Marcel Proust, Thomas Mann, W. G. Sebald and Thomas Pynchon – in Hungarian periodicals. In 2007, he published his first book »Repülési kézikönyv« (tr. The aviator’s handbook), which comprised short stories and poems on the subject of travel by land, water and air. Dunajcsik’s protagonists are always fascinated by the eroticism of art and the art of the erotic, whether they’re on the road to Venice, discovering an Art Nouveau building in Budapest, searching for an antique book or taking a trip to Transylvania. Dunajcsik received the Sándor Bródy Prize for his debut and was described as an »outstanding representative of the younger generation of talented writers working in different genres […] this book definitively proves his skill in the realm of prose, while also displaying a tremendous level of sensitivity in his handling of personal relationships in a wide range of different worlds« (László Márton). In 2009, Dunajcsik was a stipend holder at the Junge Akademie of the Berlin Academy of Arts. In this period, he joined with Mexican artist Plinio Ávila to create the book »Der Boden unter Berlin« (2010; tr. The Ground under Berlin), a booklet of seventy drawings on used U-Bahn tickets and a short story of a young man who loses his father, a former U-Bahn driver. »Balbec Beach« (2012) is a collection of 13 short stories. His first full-length book in German, the short story collection »Unterwasserstädte« (tr. Under water cities) comes out in 2017.

In 2011, Dunajcsik joined the founders of Libri, a Budapest-based publishing house, as editor-in-chief of literary fiction until 2014, also working at the agency Sárközy & Co., where he represented Hungarian authors worldwide. Between 2014 and 2016 he has been living in Reykjavík, learning Icelandic language and literature on a grant. His children’s book »A szemüveges szirén« (tr. The Spectacled Siren) is inspired by his time in Iceland. In 2016, he participated in the exchange program of the Akademie Schloss Solitude Stuttgart and the József Attila Kör (JAK) for young Hungarian authors, in 2017, he moved to Berlin. He is also active as a translator from English, French and Icelandic, and has worked on the Hungarian translation of authors such as Robbe-Grillet, Wilde, Baudelaire, Saint-Exupéry, Nabokov, Andri Snær Magnason and F. S. Fitzgerald. Recently he started to play the langspil, a traditional Icelandic instrument, which he now often uses during poetry readings and performances.


Repülési kézikönyv
[Ill. Zsolt Korai]
Budapest, 2007
Der Boden unter Berlin
[Ill. Plinio Avila]
Akademie der Künste
Berlin, 2010
Balbec Beach
[Ill. Plinio Avila]
Libri Kiadó
Budapest, 2012
A szemüveges szirén
[Ill. Gergő Gilicze]
Kolibri Kiadó
Budapest, 2016
Edition Solitude
Stuttgart, 2017
[Ü: Tímea Tankó u. Lacy Kornitzer]