Innovative Trends in Hungarian Art from 1945 to the Present Day – The Collection of György Grüner
György Grüner, the Hungarian-born physicist now living in Los Angeles, started collecting Hungarian works of art form the postwar period in the early 1990s. As an intellectual art collector, he has been enriching his collection with artworks incorporating modern formal motifs and progressive technical solutions – and he relentlessly searches for these qualities with the meticulousness of a scientist.
“I consider artists those who did not only paint aesthetic paintings and created interesting forms and figures but who were open towards innovation, who adopted new attitudes and production techniques and managed to break through the wall of conventions by sheer force. It is innovation that defines the development of science and technology, and, as a matter of fact, the objective of the collection as well”, says the Hungarian-American professor of physics about the artistic perspective behind his collection.
The earliest pieces in the collection were created between 1946 and 1948 by some members of the European school and the Gallery of the Four Directions artist collectives. These works are indeed a high quality introduction to the exhibition displaying innovative works of Hungarian geometric abstract art. It is that valuable touch of experimentation and transformation of a new phenomenon into art that inspires György Grüner to enlarge his collection. The majority of the collection is from the 1960s, when many young artists – Imre Bak, Pál Deim, János Fajó, Tibor Gáyor, István Harasztÿ, Tamás Hencze, Katalin Hetey, Ilona Keserü, Tamás Konok, Dóra Maurer, István Nádler – developed their own artistic vision, several of them as members of the Iparterv group. The latest ambitions of Hungarian art after 1990 is represented by the works of Barna Benedek, Bálint Bolygó, Katalin Haász, Zénó Kelemen and András Wolsky.
The approach of the artists presented in this exhibition – the definition of possible links between science and art, the prevailing use of geometric and concrete forms – also reflects the researcher and artistic philosophy of Victor Vasarely, after whom this museum is named.
Many artists, whose works are included in the collection, are active members of the Open Structures Art Society (OSAS ), thus the exhibition opening in mid-June on the first floor of the Vasarely Museum is organised parallel to other temporary exhibitions of the society.