The exhibition of a world famous Hungarian photographer opens in Budapest!

This exhibition – Nicolás Muller: The committed gaze highlights the work of Nicolás Muller (Né Miklós Müller, Orosháza, Hungary, 1913 – Andrín, Spain, 2000). He spent most of his life in Spain and was one of the leading figures of Hungarian socio-documentary photography and at the same time he is considered one of the most important exponents of cinematographic photography. post-war Spain, the country where he would finally settle.

The exhibition – on view at the Capa Center from June 16 to September 4 – explores the landscapes of a lifelong journey and the countries where Muller lived. He understands 126 most unpublished photographs taken between 1930 and 1967being produced especially for this occasion, at the request of the Cervantes Institute and the Ministry of Culture of Spain.

The exhibition was organized by the Capa Center and the Instituto Cervantes Budapest, and co-organized by the Spanish Ministry of Culture with the collaboration of the Spanish Embassy in Budapest.

Muller enriches the extraordinary list of internationally recognized Hungarian photographers, such as André Kertész, László Moholy-Nagy, Martin Munkácsi, Francisco Aszmann, Eva Besnyö, Brassaï, Lucien Hervé, Mari Mahr or Robert Capa. Like many of them, he spent much of his life in exile.

Nicolás Muller with Samu (self-portrait). Tangier, Morocco Ana Muller Collection Photo: press release

Exhibition Capa Center Budapest Nicolá Muller

Casa de Campo park. Madrid, Spain Regional Archives of the Community of Madrid. Nicolás Muller Collection 1950 Photo: press release

Nicolás Muller, of Jewish origin, spent the years before World War II in his native Hungary. He received his first camera at the age of thirteen and immediately began to explore his ability to express a certain idea of ​​the world. He maintained this passion for photography while studying law and politics at the University of Szeged where he became friends with Gyula Ortutay, Miklós Radnóti and Fanni Gyarmati among others. During his four years of university, he will also survey the Hungarian plains and villages, on foot, by train or by bicycle, photographing children, scenes of rural life and workers.

construction of dykes on the Tisza river.

Like many of his fellow Hungarian photographers of the time, Muller’s work in the 1930s was defined by a humanist and documentary approach, showing a strong sense of sympathy for the world of work and the more modest members of society. society. This interest will remain for the rest of his life and will underline the social character of his work. He was inspired by the avant-garde movement’s progressive mindset and aesthetic, which is evident in the diagonal perspectives and high and low angle shots of his photographs.

Exhibition Capa Center Budapest Nicolá Muller

Summer Camp 2. Haute-Savoie, France Ana Muller Collection 1938/39 Photo: press release

Exhibition Capa Center Budapest Nicolá Muller

Sunbath. Hungary. Ana Muller 1935 collection. Photo: press release

Nicolás Muller witnessed a time that marked Europe: he faced the horrors of Nazism at the very beginning of its brutality and, in his search for a free society, he visited many countries under the influence of Nazi barbarism, such as Austria, Italy and France, or which were victims of internal conflicts and suffered from authoritarianism, such as Portugal and Spain. Eventually he moved to Madrid in 1947.

After Muller fled to Paris, he photographed the city and life in the streets.

Exhibition Capa Center Budapest Nicolá Muller

Dam construction 4. Hungary Ana Muller Collection 1936 Photo: press release

He is surrounded by people like André Kertész, Brassaï, Robert Capa or even Picasso whom he meets on several occasions. Here he developed his potential with commissions for magazines such as Cheers and Paris Match. As social and political contexts evolve, he photographs agricultural workers and dockers in the ports of Marseille and Porto, then children and street vendors in Tangier, and life in the countryside. Later he photographed prominent cultural and social figures in Madrid.

Nicolás Muller always strived to create a selection of his 100 best photographs, but as it turned out later, there are many other photos worth showing to the public.

In 2015, when Muller’s studio in Madrid closed for good, Nicolás Muller’s daughter, Ana Muller, herself a photographer, came across a long-forgotten box containing 3,000 negatives. Given the exceptional quality of the photographsit has decided to present some of the unpublished photos to the interested public, while taking the opportunity to make public some of the unpublished material held by the Regional Archive of the Autonomous Community of Madrid.

Several of the photographs presented at the Capa Center have been used to illustrate various publications which have led to significant changes, but now these photos are also available in their original format. This exhibition provides insight into Nicolás Muller, a representative of concerned photography, whose images were taken in half a dozen countries over three decades. Moreover, he gives the opportunity to have a broader vision of the work of Nicolás Muller that we have known so far.

Nicolás Muller: The committed gaze

In view
June 16, 2022 – September 04, 2022
Tuesday–Friday: 2 p.m.–7 p.m.
Saturday–Sunday: 11 a.m.–7 p.m.
Closed Mondays and holidays.
Robert Capa Center for Contemporary Photography (8 Nagymező Street, 1065 Budapest)

Source: Press release

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