Born in Budapest Hungary, Lajos Héder is an environmental artist with a background in architecture and urban design. Throughout his career he has been designing and building public places for inspired community use. He believes that art derives from the specific place where it happens and from common interests in life, death, sunlight, water, sex, food, friendship, stories, etc., not so much from other art. His strengths are the understanding of urban scale and activity, visualizing architectural spaces from drawings and meshing artworks into the process of design and construction.
Héder has spent his career designing and building public places for active community use. He believes that art derives from the specific place where it happens and from common interests in sunlight, water, sex, food, friendship, and stories, not so much from other art. Lajos’ strengths are the understanding of urban scale and activity; visualizing architectural spaces from drawings; and fitting art into the process of design and construction. Besides his public artwork he has designed many downtown pedestrian plans and 6 completed artists’ live/work communities. He was also the designer of prize-winning entries for two international competitions in his native Budapest, Hungary: the new National Theater in 1989 and Expo ’96 in 1990.
Lajos’ research and publications include the book Aesthetics in Transportation a guide book for public art and design, prepared for US DOT, and a draft Art Plan for Tucson, AZ. Since 1992 he has been a member of the Boston Society of Architects Focus Teams setting new public transportation and development patterns in the Boston Region and re-planning the waterfront. His recent public art work has focused on water related projects (WaterWorks at Arizona Falls, Zanjero’s Line), land development (Terra Fugit), alternative energy (SunFlowers an Electric Garden and Solar Light Raft) and other aspects of urban public space. He currently serves on the Public Art Network Council.
In 1990, Mags Harries and Lajos Héder formed Harries/ Héder Collaborative. Since then they have worked together on over 30 major public art commissions, including The Big Question, many recognized for national and international awards. All of their projects share a highly site specific approach. They make work which shapes a place, generates community and makes public spaces resonate.