Exhibitions > The work of art of the month > Archive > Sándor Bortnyik (1883-1976): Red Engine, 1918


Sándor Bortnyik (1883-1976): Red Engine, 1918


Oil, cartboard 44× 33.5 cm
Hungarian National Museum, Historical Gallery
Ltsz.: 67.49

One of the most determinate figure of the circle of Hungarian Activism orgainsed around Lajos Kassák, was Sándor Bortnyik, learnd at Rippl- Rónai, and Kernstok, and was employed in illustrating and design posters. Suggesting of his painter colleauge, J. Mattis Teuch, he joined the round of the progressive artistic newsletter called "Ma" (Today) and became one of the most consequent accomplishing of avant-garde be driven by social thought. His opinion of agitativ tusk of art mirroring in his all life – work amalgamating German expressionism and cubism call into existence his own artistic language which were moved forward to geometric abstractionism.

Red Engine, painted in 1918 displays a composition with the combination of elements flushed, cut with vertical and diagonal edges in cubic way. The main blue, red and yellow fields of the surface were cut with three white wedges showing the dynamism of movement. As symbol of the XIX. century industrialization and workmen, the train, together with red color destined for social thoughs. All of Bortnyik's paintings from this period, as the Red Sun, Red Factory, of Red Blacksmiths, displaying the main tusk of activism what is not only reforming the art, but the social era too.

Sándor Bortnyik (1883-1976): Red Engine, 1918
  © 2005 Hungarian National Museum