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The Hungarian National Gallery, established in 1957, uses the library that once belonged to the Metropolitan Picture Gallery, as its museum library. The holdings were later expanded with legacies of books left behind by some outstanding art historians (Dénes Radocsay, Gyula Szentiványi, István Genthon, and Gábor Pogány Ö.). The museum library’s volumes have also been augmented in recent years through purchases, domestic and international exchanges as well as donations.
In accordance with the museum’s scope of collection, the library’s holdings primarily comprise publications on Hungarian art, painting, sculpture and architecture along with those on the theme of museum science. Hungarian exhibition catalogues, including some true rarities, are the strength of the collection.
The use of the library by the public is restricted. Advance registration is required for external users and the books can only be read in the library. Inter-library loaning is also available.
Location and contacts
Buda Palace, Building A and B
H- 1014 Budapest, Szent György tér 2
Telephone:+ 36 1 469-7746, +36 1 469-7747
Opening hours: Monday-Friday: 10-16 pm,
during which time we are also pleased to answer inquires on the phone.
Online catalogue – changes in figures
The library of the Hungarian National Gallery and the library of the Museum of Fine Arts have a joint online catalogue, accessible at http://hunteka.szepmuveszeti.hu/. At the end of 2018, the catalogue comprised some two-thirds of the holdings of the Hungarian National Gallery; the remaining material is being catalogued. The location () of the item you wish to find are recorded under “Lelőhely” (location).
19th and 20th Century Paintings
The 19th and 20th Century Paintings Collection, currently comprising 10,000 items, holds Hungarian artworks dating from 1800 to 1945. Its origins reach back to the mid-19th century and the Founding Society of the National Picture Gallery. Based on continuous purchasing, the expanding collection was initially displayed in the National Museum.
Sculptures and Medals
Our collection preserves the most prized works of 19th- and 20th-century Hungarian sculpture along with coins, medals and plaques by Hungarian masters from the 19th to 21st centuries. In addition, it contains wax and plaster copies replacing original artworks, as well as coin works made by contemporary artists. Our holdings comprise some ten thousand items. The most outstanding works are displayed at our permanent exhibition.
The Contemporary Collection of the Hungarian National Gallery has been collecting Hungarian artworks from 1945 to the present day. It aims at becoming an assemblage that is capable of presenting, next to overall tendencies, styles and outstanding artists, artistic phenomenon that used to and still characterise the artistic life of Hungary in the last few decades.
International Art after 1800
The reunification of the Museum of Fine Arts and the Hungarian National Gallery has resulted in some major changes and challenges for the Collection of International Art after 1800. As the first of many steps in a process expected to last several years, the collection is moving out of the recently renovated building of the Museum of Fine Arts, which now serves as the home of art from antiquity until the year 1800.