Museums in Budapest
Of the dozens of Budapest's museums, from the Museum of Transportation to Gül Baba's Tomb, here's a few no fine art lover should miss, especially if interested in contemporary art.
This is the webpage of the Petőfi Literary Museum, which is collecting and preserving records of Hungarian literature. The Museum is named after Sándor Petőfi, since he is the poet who symbolizes Hungarian poetry to most of the readers both in Hungary and abroad. Additionally, the institution is the successor of the Petőfi House, therefore the core of its collection was constituted of Petőfi manuscripts and relics.
A manuscript archive, a library, an art and relics collection and an audiovisual library for researchers belong to the Petőfi Literary Museum, besides its permanent and temporary exhibitions that aim at popularizing Hungarian literature.
The Petőfi Literary Museum administers three further important memorial sights of Hungarian literature: the Kassák Museum, the Endre Ady Memorial Museum and the Jókai Memorial Room.
(Museum of Fine Arts)
Located on Budapest's imposing Heroes' Square, the Museum of Fine Arts exhibits ancient and modern paintings and sculptures in a century-old building. With around 4000 items, Szépművészeti's Egyptian collection is the second largest of its kind in Central Europe; recent popular temporary exhibitions have displayed the works of Claude Monet and Alberto Giacometti.
Address: 1146 Budapest, Dózsa György út 41.
Műcsarnok deals almost exclusively with modern art, as if casting a youthful smile at the more conservative Fine Arts Museum located on the opposite side of Heroes' Square. Besides fine art exhibitions, the gallery often hosts discussions on literary works, as well as concerts and movie screenings.
Address: 1146 Budapest, Hősök tere.
Open to the public in the Royal Palace since 1991, the Ludwig Museum was founded by Peter and Irene Ludwig, the Aachen Ludwig Foundation, the Hungarian Ministry of Culture and Education and the Hungarian National Gallery. The collection, originally based on a 70-item donation from the Ludwigs, has since been extended to include the works of Hungarian artists of the past three decades.
Address: 1014 Budapest, Szent György tér 2.
MEO Contemporary Art Collection
Three thousand square meters of exhibition space in an elegantly renovated former leather factory in one of Budapest's outer industrial districts. The private owners say that, while eclectic, the collection strives to represent contemporary Hungarian fine art by exhibiting both well-established artists and new talent.
Address: 1047 Budapest, József Attila u. 4-6.
Beautiful 18th-century baroque mansion perched on a hill in Budapest's 3rd district, and an adjoining Trinitarian church that sometimes also serves as an exhibition venue. Good collection of 20th century paintings, but the venue should be a real thrill in itself.
Address: Kiscelli út 108.
Some of undeniable artistic value, some mere junk, these "gigantic memorials from the Communist dictatorship" were removed from public places after the 1989 democratic changes, and are now exhibited in an outdoor museum about 10 kilometers from downtown Budapest. Prepare for tons of brick, rock and metal - tons of Marx, Engels and Lenin, that is.
Address: Budapest (South Buda), corner of Balatoni út and Szabadkai utca.