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Gyula Derkovits (Szombathely, 1894 April 13Budapest, 1934 June 18). Hungarian painter, printmaker and draughtsman. He was trained, like his father, as a carpenter, but not wanting to pursue this vocation he volunteered for the army during World War I. He was subsequently gravely wounded and also contracted tuberculosis. In 1916, as a war casualty, he moved to Budapest, where he worked as a joiner and studied drawing and painting. From 1918 he trained at the free school set up by Károly Kernstok. In 1923 he settled in Vienna for three years, where his exhibition in 1925 met with considerable success. He exhibited 40 pictures in Budapest in 1927, and he was immediately ranked among the best Hungarian painters. He became a member of the Hungarian Communist Party in 1918. Although he later lost active contact with the Communist movement, he remained committed to its ideals. This is reflected in the iconography of his work; even his early works, most of which are untraced, show a conspicuous social concern. The sentimentality of this early painting was soon superseded by a mixture of Cubist composition and Expressionist concern. His copperplate engraving, Self-portrait with Bishop's Mitre (1921; Budapest, N.G.), shows a hammer and sickle in a five-pointed star on the mitre. In his Last Supper (1922; Budapest, N.G.) the faces are all self-portraits. During this period he also painted mock-classical idylls (e.g. Concert, 1921-2; Under a Big Tree, 1922; both Budapest, N.G.).


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