Gyula Hincz (1904-1986) was born in Budapest, Hungary. He was a painter, illustrator, mosaicist, tapestry designer, stage designer, poster designer, printmaker, sculptor, teacher and administrator. From 1922 to 1929 he studied at the Hungarian Academy of Fine Arts in Budapest under Gyula Rudnay (1878-1957) and János Vaszary (1867-1939). In the 1920s he went on study tour in Paris, Berlin, and Rome, where he had exhibitions with the STURM Co. German Expressionism and Italian neoclassicism affected his art, and between the two World Wars, he belonged to the art groups, UME and KUT.

In the mid-1920s he became acquainted with Béla Uitz's General Ludd series (1923; Budapest, N.G.) and in Venice he saw the work of such Russian avant-garde artists as Rodchenko and El Lissitzky and such Italian Futurists as Severini. In 1926 in Paris he studied the works of Léger, Braque, Picasso and others in the collection of Léonce Rosenberg. He was also influenced by the art of Brancusi and Joseph Csáky, as well as André Breton’s Manifeste du surréalisme (Paris, 1924). From the outset, Hincz's work revealed a number of different objectives. Although he experimented with abstraction, the reference to the figure is always present in one form or another. His profound interest in humanity and its social interaction was based on, and motivated by, this interest in the figure. His early paintings are expressionist in mood and are composed of flattened forms in a shallow space in a manner reminiscent of Cubo-Futurism art. Elements of Purism and Surrealism are also present. After World War II he became increasingly preoccupied with realism, political Agitprop art and the problems inherent in creating new symbols; a study trip to Korea, China and Vietnam in 1947-8 provided him with new ideas. His history paintings, genre studies and portraits were inspired by the realistic art of the 1950s. He worked in a wide variety of media in the 1960s, producing large decorative works in the form of murals, paintings on glass and mosaics (e.g. Technology and Science, glass mosaic, 1970; Budapest, Tech. U. Bldg). His large tapestries (e.g. Science, 1967; Debrecen, Agric. Coll.) often combine symbolic forms and natural and illustrative details. As a stage designer, he was a Hungarian pioneer of the dynamic, emblematic theatre initiated by Russian artists. He was also a gifted poster designer, printmaker and sculptor and was one of the most important book illustrators in Hungary, executing drawings for the writings of such authors as François Villon and Anatole France. He taught (1946-9) at the Hungarian Academy of Crafts and Design (Magyar Iparmüvészeti Foiskolá) in Budapest and was its director from 1958 to 1963. He also taught (1949-63) at the Hungarian Academy of Fine Arts in Budapest.

In 1983 he donated 400 of his paintings to his favorite city, Vác, where he has had a permanent exhibition since. Hincz was a brilliant talent with a restless spirit that worked in different forms. His exhibitions are too numerous to list. His works are found all over the world, in both public and private collections.

PRIZES

1952 MUNKÁCSY PRIZE
1957 MUNKÁCSY PRIZE
1958 KOSSUTH PRIZE
1961 Graphics Biannual, Grand Prix
1964 Honored Artist
1968 Merited Artist
1982 SZOT Award

REFERENCES

Fitz, Péter: Contemporary Hungarian Art Lexicon; Budapest, Enciklopédia Kiadó, 1999, Vol. 2, pp. 129-131.
Bénézit, Emmanuel: Dictionnaire critique et documentaire des, sculpteurs et dessinateurs. Paris, Librairie Gründ, 1976, Volume V., p. 548.
Seregélyi, György: Hungarian Painters and Graphic Artists Lexicon 1800-1988; Szeged 1988, p. 245.
P.Sz.T.: Contemporary Hungarian Painters and Sculptors; Budapest 1985, p. 126.
Láncz, Sándor: HINCZ; Budapest 1972.

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