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János Vaszary has enjoyed unwaning popularity in recent years, with exhibitions of his works attracting throngs of visitors and record prices being achieved for his paintings at auction. In the post-war years after his death, the communist cultural canon utterly rejected his vivacious painting, infused with (Western) European culture. Certain attempts were made to rehabilitate him, notably, the memorial exhibition held in the building of the Supreme Court in 1961, curated by the recently deceased art historian Lenke Haulisch, who also published the first monograph of the artist in 1978. But it was not until 2007, when a major exhibition of Vaszary’s œuvre was held at the Hungarian National Gallery, that the painter was finally given the recognition and proper prominence in museums that he deserves.
Vaszary now occupies a position at the pinnacle of the Hungarian art canon. He was active all his life and produced an enormous quantity of works. The majority of them are known to the public and frequently appear in reproduction in illustrated albums and auction catalogues. The largest collection of works by Vaszary is held by the Museum of Fine Arts – Hungarian National Gallery, as his surviving legacy was transferred here after the death of his widow. The latest exhibition at the Hungarian National Gallery promises to be a major sensation for fans of Vaszary’s work, be they art historians, members of the art trade, or the art-loving general public. Of the forty hitherto missing works that have recently come to light, twenty-four oil paintings that have never previously been shown to the public are featured in the present exhibition, alongside masterpieces held by our museum and some less familiar pieces from private collections.
In this extraordinary exhibition and catalogue, visitors and readers will find answers to the questions of how the paintings that lay hidden for decades were rediscovered, which period of the artist’s career they stem from, and what significance they have in the painter’s œuvre.
|Series||Publications of the Hungarian National Gallery, 2022/3|
|Editor(s)||Series editor: BORUS Judit|
|Publisher||Museum of Fine Arts – Hungarian National Gallery|
|Pages and Illustartions||160 pages w. color illustrations|