The Nagybánya artists’ colony

The Nagybánya or the Baia Mare artists’ colony was an art movement founded in the Belle Époque, which gave Baia Mare the title of “city of painters”. During a century of uninterrupted activity, the Nagybánya artists’ colony brought over more than 3,000 artists from Central and Eastern Europe.

Simon Hollósy founded the Nagybánya artists’ colony in 1896, when he brought to Baia Mare a group of artists from the Munich art school to paint en plein air during the summer. The Society of Nagybánya Painters was formed in 1912 and lasted until 1937. Meanwhile, in 1927, the School of Fine Arts of Baia Mare was established, but it was closed in 1937 when the Society was dissolved. Then another school was opened which closed in 1944.

Naturalism, impressionism, post- and neo-impressionism, expressionism, neoclassicism, constructivism, various avant-garde styles, and many more flourished in the Nagybánya artists’ colony. The artists mostly painted landscapes, figurative landscapes, plein air, religious and historical themed paintings, and works exploring the connection between humankind and nature.

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