Hungary Celebrates an Iconic Impressionist Painter

18 Jul 2020  Sat

Pal Szinyei Merse, an iconic painter of Hungary is celebrated on Hungarian Coin. Hungary issued two coins on the 175th anniversary of his birth on 4th July 1845. The silver coin is priced at 67.50 Dollars and the base metal coin at 19.95 Dollars.

Szinyei began his studies at the Munich Art Academy in 1864, and by 1869 his early sketches already revealed his search for new ways of expression. He won a gold medal at the 1873 World Fair in Vienna for his painting Bath House, but his main work from that period, Picnic, was met with little enthusiasm.

Since paintings are the basis for both sides of the two coins, which are identical in design, differing only in face value and metallic composition. The obverse design is based on his 1882 work The Balloon (Leghajo in Hungarian), now part of the collection of the Hungarian National Gallery in Budapest. The painting symbolizes freedom in art and thought, but is not too abstract. The numbers used for the denomination reflect the form of the balloon.

The reverse replicates Self-portrait in a Leather Jacket, 1897 work now in Uffizi Gallery in Florence. The legends on the reverse — SZINYEI MERSE PAL and the dates 1845–1920 on the left, and the mark of designer Borbála Szanyi on the right — are creatively integrated into the trunks of the trees.

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