CODART, Dutch and Flemish art in museums worldwide

Van Gogh Budapesten

Vincent van Gogh in Budapest Exhibition: 1 December 2006 - 20 March 2007


Judit Geskó

From the museum website

The Museum of Fine Arts celebrates its 100th birthday with a large-scale exhibition of the works of Vincent van Gogh (1853–1890). Visitors will have the opportunity to see nearly eighty works by the post-Impressionist Dutch painter. The works will arrive at the museum from more than 40 collections worldwide, from museums such as the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam, the Musée D’Orsay in Paris, The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, and the National Gallery of Art in Washington.

Addiitional museum information

The art of van Gogh needs no introduction since his person as well as his fascinating life and work are well known among art lovers. Yet, there have been only a handful of exhibitions displaying his works in Hungarian museums. The current exhibition includes outstanding paintings from van Gogh’s ouevre, on loan from prominent foreign museums, rarely seen drawings and graphic works owned by the Museum of Fine Arts, as well as works that once formed part of Hungarian private collections.

The large-scale exhibition comprising nearly 150 works has five parts. The monographic part exhibiting van Gogh’s oeuvre includes 43 paintings, 24 drawings and 10 graphic works (lithographs and engravings). This selection places special emphasis on the early, Dutch, stage of the artist’s work to show the beginnings, and then the sudden emergence of his individual style.

The Parisian stage is represented by a smaller number of works. It illustrates how van Gogh mastered the Impressionist style of landscape painting and shows the appearance of the characteristics of his own style. The works in the exhibition embrace all the themes in the artist’s oeuvre. During the selection of the works it was important not to display the most frequently reproduced works from this diverse oeuvre but to also display lesser-known works of the same outstanding excellence.

As a prelude to the exhibition, artists who influenced van Gogh’s art will be introduced in two parts: first, those Old Masters who had a determining role in the development of van Gogh’s art Rembrandt (1606-1669), Delacroix (1798-1863), Daubigny (1817-1878) and Millet (1814-1875) and, secondly, works by van Gogh’s Dutch contemporaries who influenced his art. Reproductions of Japanese wood engravings that were also found in van Gogh’s own collection will be exhibited in a separate section. The engravings, consisting of almost two dozen pieces, have been selected from Hungarian collections.

The final part of the exhibition focuses on the influence exerted by the Dutch master on early 20th-century Hungarian art and explores parallels to be found between the master’s work and Hungarian fine art. Thus, visitors will see works by Mihály Munkácsy, László Paál, János Nagy Balogh, Tivadar Csontváry Kosztka, József Rippl-Rónai, as well as the Hungarian fauves (wild beasts) Gyula Derkovics and Gyula Czimra. This part of the exhibition will evoke the period in which the Museum of Fine Arts was opened 100 years ago, as well as the characteristics of its art.

The Museum of Fine Arts will publish a 600-page catalogue in Hungarian and English in collaboration with Vince Books.