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Les fauves hongrois

The Fauvists are in the air… After Vlaminck, who has met with success at the Luxembourg museum, now we have Matisse’s Hungarian epigones, who also take their name from the scandal created at the Salon d’automne in 1905. One of the main exhibitors from the Hungarian branch was actually present during the founding event: Béla Czóbel was then very near to the famous room 7 (the one with Matisse, Derain and Vlaminck). The catalogue that accompanies the exhibition that just opened in Céret shows the pictorial effervescence that took over Hungary right before WW I, with the creation of an Artists’ Home in Budapest or of an artists’ community at Kecskemét. The influence of Paris was then essential. Many of these Hungarian Fauve artists studied in Paris, either at the Julian academy or with Matisse (such as Perlrott Csaba), and had their workshops there (an appendix to the catalogue gives the addresses). Their unity, materialized by the creation of the group of Eight, did not last long. Consequently, as of 1911, Kernstok, who opted for a classic style, repainted his former paintings. The war took care of dispersing the rest of them. The tragic history of a young couple of painters symbolises it well: Valéria Dénes died of pneumonia on 18 July 1915. Two days later, her husband, Sándor Galimberti committed suicide at her burial…

• Les fauves hongrois, Biro publishing house, 2008, 264 p., 39 €, ISBN : 978-2-35119-047-0

Les fauves hongrois -

Review published in the newsletter #96 - from 26 June 2008 to 2 July 2008

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