Monet and friends in Budapest

05-12-2003

An exhibition "Monet and Friends" has just opened at the Museum of Fine arts in Budapest. It is being described as one of the biggest art events in Hungary for several decades. Some 70 impressionist paintings and drawings from European and US museums will be on display until March 15.

Budapest has waited 93 years for this exhibition. In the 1910s quite a number of impressionist exhibitions were held here, but from Hungarian private collections, since at that time Budapest was a centre of collecting impressionist works. The title of this new show is Monet and friends. But who are those friends? Curator Judit Geskó gives the answer.

"His contemporaries such as Édouard Manet, Alfred Sisley, Paul Signac, Camille Pissarro, and Auguste Renoir. And the show in the Budapest exhibition, a lot of French painters from the beginning of the 19th century too."

This exhibition could only be put together with a huge organisation work, especially if we consider that it was started in March this year only. As a result of broad international co-operation, 64 paintings came from different parts of the world, the United States, Great Britain, France, Switzerland, Germany, Denmark, and so on, to be on display together with the three paintings and numerous drawings by Monet owned by the Budapest museum. As for the success so far...

"There is a huge queue and we are very, very happy because not only adults are visiting the exhibition but we also have a lot of young visitors too."

The exhibition follows a special thematic order, which is observed by the computer programme written for children and young visitors, available on the spot.

"We centralised the painting and drawing and sculptures in nine themes: from the portraits of Monet and friends, via the travels to Venice, Holland and London to the theme of the garden and parks."

No doubt, the Monet and Friends show can fairly be called the exhibition of the century. Directly or indirectly, it offers not just a visual experience to art lovers:

"The national theatre will organise complementary programs in January and February - impressionist poets and impressionist music. And in the exhibition rooms we have two upcoming concerts and I hope that everybody will be very pleased with this cultural program"

As usual, this time also a beautiful catalogue with historical references and essays on the paintings is also available in the Museum of Fine Arts in Budapest.

05-12-2003