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10 questions

Business Card

Erika Bartos

Born in Budapest in 1974. In 1998 she graduated from the Budapest University of Technology, degree in architecture, MSc.

She prepared her first illustrated tales for her children; she contacted a publisher upon request of her acquaintances and friends. Her books became the favourites of families with young children within an instance. Her Berry and Dolly series was translated into multiple languages, which was followed by projector films and animated series of episodes.

Besides her poetry and juvenile books a book for children suffering from cancer and leukaemia entitled Bravery Test was also published alongside a booklet entitled I am waiting for coronary I am waiting for Cardiac Catheterization, a preparatory brochure for children suffering from heart diseases.

She remained loyal to architecture besides working in the area of child literature, as currently she is working on a book about Budapest.

1. What do you like to do the most, when you have nothing else to do?

I don’t remember times when I do not do anything. I have very little free time, but if I happen to have a little time off, I like to saw. My size is not standard, I struggle buying clothes that fit me, and I also like to figure out unique and creative clothes. I have a little seamstress corner in the house, usually it’s flooded by leftover materials.

2. What are the characteristics you most love in the other gender?

Aptness. I am very bad at administration, organisation and in the practical things of life. I admire their inborn eye for engineering, driving. These are my weak points.

3. Whose talent do you envy the most?

I do not envy anyone, but there are many artists whose work fascinates me. For example the captivating music of Félix Lajkó, the crystal-clear signing of Ágnes Herczku, the matchless voice of Gyula Deák Bill and drawing talent of Zsolt Richly are enthralling to me.

4. Which is your favourite book and why?

One of my most beautiful reading experiences of recent times relates to the book of Patrick Ness entitled A Monster Calls. It is a staggering and touching book, with ingenious graphics, but I am also very keen on architecture-related books.

5. What is your most valuable asset?

I have a few old notes, which I cherish very much. I was singing in the Hungarian Radio Children’s Choir; music became for us like a second mother tongue. I am very much linked to a few coral scores. For example Zoltan Kodály’s Angels and Shepherds coral score and the works of Britten,Stockhausen and Stravinsky.

6. What is the human error, which you can tolerate the most?

I accept any errors relatively well, however I am unable to tolerate malice.

7. Where would you like to move and why?

I love Transylvania, it relaxes me. Peaceful, pure and good-natured. But I live in Budapest; I love the city together with all of its difficulties. I spend most of my days in the area of Blaha Lujza Square and Eastern Railway Station; I know this part of town the best.

8. Which is your favourite quote?

I would choose the words of street sweeper Beppo from the wise book of Michael Ende, entitledMomo: “ U must never think of the whole street at once, understand? You must only concentrate on the next step, the next breath, the next stroke of the broom, and the next, and the next…That way you enjoy your work.”

9. If you could choose another job, what would it be?

I would love to be a kindergarten teacher, I always wanted to be one when I was child and therefore I love it when my job is related to children. Now for example I have received an honouring request from the Heim Pál Children’s Hospital to design decoration for the walls of the infant ward to be soon reconstructed using the characters of my Berry and Dolly series. I am doing sketches, I have figured out the graphical setup in a way that babies and recovering children will see them very well even while they are laid in bed.

10. If you could enjoy again one past moment of your life, which one would it be?

I cannot forget the moment, when I learnt that I was expecting a baby. My joy exceeded all imaginable euphoria. I was born for this moment, that’s why I was brought to this world to become a mother. And when it happened I felt that my life was given a meaning.

Fairytale screening in Transylvania


Berry and Dolly won Best Short Film Award in China


International Children's Day at Embassy of Poland, in Tokio


Berry and Dolly puppet exhibition