After several years’ preparation, a comprehensive retrospective show of the painter Tivadar Csontváry Kosztka is opening in the former Army Headquarters building of the Buda Castle on July 5, 2015. The show is open to visitors until 31 December 2015.
Tivadar Csontváry Kosztka (1853–1919) is one of the most influential figures of Hungarian fine arts. The exhibitions he meticulously organised by himself practically never elicited any critical response from his contemporaries. His works did not arouse any public interest or critical acclaim in his lifetime. Yet, the first book-length study of his work was published as early as three years after his death, and the 1930 retrospective in Ernst Museum was a considerable success. In 1936 several new artworks of Csontváry were introduced to the Hungarian public, which showed a growing interest for the painter’s work. In 1956 a large-scale exhibition was organised in Brussels, Fifty Years of Modern Art, where Csontváry’s painting Horse Ride by the Sea (Tengerparti sétalovaglás) was presented side by side with the works of Van Gogh and Gauguin. His 1963 retrospective show in Székesfehérvár (which was later taken to Budapest) was a huge success. In 1973 the Csontváry Museum in Pécs was opened. After much preparation, a series of international exhibitions was organised in 1994; however, the highly anticipated foreign success still did not come about.
Most of Csontváry’s works are kept in public collections, such as the Hungarian National Gallery, the Janus Pannonius Museum at Pécs, the Herman Ottó Museum in Miskolc, the Damjanich János Museum in Szolnok, the National Gallery of Bratislava (Pozsony), the Museum of Lucenec (Losonc) and the Budapest History Museum. Several of his works can be found in private collections.