Sándor Petőfi is much more to Hungary than an important poet – rather he is seen as poetry incarnate.
He became the symbol of the Reform Age, when widespread social unrest led to the Freedom War of 1848-49, and lost his life in battle against the Austrians' Russian allies. Even today the legends about him have a life of their own, his face has become an icon, and his verse has inspired political thought on both sides of centre.
In this exhibition we attempt to reveal Petőfi's brief but crowded life and the dilemmas which he faced. Instead of the personality simplified by posterity, we show the complexity of his roles as man and poet.
The introduction of dragons emerging in a variety of appearances facilitates a versatile approach. The exhibition offers an interpretational opportunity from the perspective of literature: it outlines how different cultures have understood dragons, it introduces the attempts to describe them ‘scientifically’ and presents their extremely fertile presence in the fine arts. The selection invites a dialogue between the several-thousand-year-old cultural historical and literary traditions of dragon presentations and contemporary art and literary works, which shed light on the achronism of the dragons’ symbolic figure.
He could have been our younger brother. Yet he belonged to the generation of our great-great grandfathers, since he lived almost 200 years ago. If someone asked me why Kleist can have an effect today, I would say because he can be read as if the two hundred years’ difference did not exist. (László Márton)
“Nothing happens except for a man eating a fish.” So said a printer after reading through Gyula Krúdy’s The Adventures of Sinbad. Could the works connected to eating by Krúdy and other Hungarian writers really be only about that? What might a dish or a meal mean in a literary text? Does knowing what the main hero had for dinner help us to understand a novel?
More aboutthe museum
This film was made as an introduction to the museum, to one of our temporary exhibitions This is Where We Are.
In the 5th district, with its unique facilities and faithfully renovated mansion halls, the palace is recommended for institutions and companies which would like to hold their conferences, scientific lectures, press receptions, book launches and other functions in an imposing environment.
The Petőfi Literary Museum was established in 1954. As the legal successor of Petőfi House, which operated as an exhibition and research centre between 1909 and 1945, the newly founded museum inherited a considerable collection. Since then it is one of the most important museums in Hungary. History and prizes of the museum>
János Arany bicentenary in 2017. See other dates in this article.
Events in January