Hungarian National Gallery English

History of the museum

Magyar Nemzeti Galéria

The Hungarian National Gallery is the largest public collection documenting and presenting the rise and development of the fine arts in Hungary. It has operated as an independent institution since 1957. The HNG moved to its present location, the former Royal Palace of Buda, in 1975.


The Hungarian National Gallery was established to display Hungarian art in itself. The basis of its collection is the New Hungarian Picture Gallery at the Budapest Museum of Fine Arts, and the Hungarian material belonging to that museum's collections of modern sculpture, medals, and prints and drawings. The holdings of the new institution include approximately 6000 paintings, 2100 sculptures, 3100 medals, 11,000 drawings, and 5000 prints. The Hungarian National Gallery opens in Budapest on 5 October 1957, in a building that formerly housed the Supreme Court today this building houses the Museum of Ethnography).


The Hungarian government designates Buda Palace as the home of the HNG.


The Hungarian National Gallery moves to Buda Palace, into buildings B, C and D, which have been refurbished for the purpose. In October it opens its exhibitions, in a provisional form. Its holdings are augmented with the material of the Department of Old Hungarian Art at the Budapest Museum of Fine Arts. In this way the showing becomes possible of the entire history of art in Hungary, works from the 11th century to the present.


Two permanent exhibitions, 'Panel Paintings and Wooden Sculptures from the Mediaeval Period' and 'Baroque Art in Hungary', are opened.


The permanent exhibition 'Late Gothic Winged Altarpieces' opens in the former throne-room of the palace.


The opening takes place of the permanent exhibition 'Mediaeval and Renaissance Stone Carvings'.


Inside the Museum, on the ground floor of Building C, the crypt of the Habsburg palatines (viceroys) is opened to the public.


The HNG's exhibition spaces are augmented through the acquisition of Building A of Buda Castle.