Hungarian Gov’t Buys Munkácsy Masterpiece

  • 10 Jan 2019 7:55 AM
  • Hungary Matters
Hungarian Gov’t Buys Munkácsy Masterpiece
The Hungarian government has acquired 19th-century painter Mihály Munkácsy’s monumental piece Golgotha, the head of the Prime Minister’s Office said.

The government paid Hungarian-born American art collector Imre Pákh 3 billion forints (EUR 9.3m) for the painting, Gergely Gulyás told a press conference.

The purchase means that all three pieces of Munkácsy’s famous “Christ Trilogy” are now owned by the Hungarian state.

The state had owned Ecce Homo! (1896), the third painting in the trilogy, for years and acquired Christ Before Pilate (1881), another of the three, from Canada’s Art Gallery of Hamilton for 5.7 million US dollars in 2015, with funding from the central bank’s programme to buy national art treasures.

That year, talks between the government and Pákh on Hungary’s possible purchase of Golgotha fell through and Pákh was ready to have the painting removed from Debrecen’s Déri Museum.

After Hungary’s heritage authority gave Golgotha protected status to prevent it from being permanently removed from the country, Pákh appealed the decision, but his claim was rejected.

In 2017, the Kúria, Hungary’s supreme court, ordered a retrial in the case. Last year, the government and Pákh entered into negotiations on the painting’s sale.


MTI Photo: Czeglédi Zsolt

  • How does this content make you feel?

XpatLoop Media Partner

Hungary Matters

Launched in January 2014, this twice-daily newsletter covers 'everything you need to know about what’s going on in Hungary and beyond', according to its publisher the state media agency MTI. Click the title above for more info, and to subscribe.

Explore More Reports

  • U.S. Supreme Court Passes On WW2 Art Claim Against Hungary

    U.S. Supreme Court Passes On WW2 Art Claim Against Hungary

    • 8 Jan 2019 8:44 AM

    The US Supreme Court said it would not take on a lawsuit filed by the heirs of Hungarian art collector Mór Lipót Herzog against Hungary with the aim of recovering artefacts confiscated in 1944 and now kept in Hungarian museums.

  • Hungarian Film Director Kósa Dies Aged 81

    Hungarian Film Director Kósa Dies Aged 81

    • 13 Dec 2018 6:56 AM

    Eminent Hungarian film director Ferenc Kósa has died, at the age of 81, the art academy MMA said. Kósa played a decisive role in reforming Hungarian cinema ever since he began his career in 1960s, the academy said statement.

  • Ministry, Siemens Partners In Dual Training In Hungary

    Ministry, Siemens Partners In Dual Training In Hungary

    • 7 Aug 2018 6:43 AM

    Hungary’s ministry of innovation and technology signed a four-year partnership with German engineering giant Siemens to launch a pilot programme preparing a reform of the vocational training system and the introduction of dual education.