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Imre Pákh

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Mihály Munkácsy, the painter of the whole world

"He dies because he's human. He lives because he's god" - wrote the poet Reviczky inspired by Munkácsy's Christ figure - and this is also believed by many to apply to the immortal talent of the artist. That is why it is delightful to see this wonderful album published in which an attempt was made to collect all the major works of Munkácsy's oeuvre including the ones taken to various places in the world, first of all to America, shortly after their completion, and hence most of them never seen in Europe, let alone Hungary.

Since the black-and-white album of 1914, there has not been a Munkácsy publication, especially in colours, which would present the totality of his great art in due manner. The publications released since then have always reproduced the same few pictures - the works on permanent showing. Broad international collaboration, researches, multiple assistance of museums, galleries and private collections were all needed to enable the appearance of this long-desired quality album containing most of the painter's works that could be sought out. The reproduced paintings are to be found in museums nearly all over the world, from Moscow and Uzhgorod through Paris, Bratislava and Cluj to many cities in the United States, the Metropolitan Museum in New York, to Germany and other West European collections. Now, a more complete collection of his works than ever is made available in this album to all the art-loving people the world over. We do hope that a future edition will be complemented with the still missing pictures.

Herewith I should like to express my thanks to all the collaborators of this volume for their efforts.

With these thoughts and with this fine album we should like to pay hommage to the memory and greatness of the famous Hungarian painter Mihály Munkácsy.

v. Imre Pákh, C.S.R.

Founder of the Munkácsy Foundation


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