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Filming in Hungary: Blog

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Budapest Street Scenes: Street Photography from Days Past

zita kisgergely

Street photography has been a speciality in Budapest and Hungary since the invention of portable hand-held cameras. At least one of the world’s most innovative and influential street photographers, Brassai (born in Transylvania as Gyula Halász) was Hungarian; and of course there is Robert Capa (born in Budapest as Endre Friedmann ) who, though best known for his iconic war photography, was also an accomplished street photographer.

With Hungary’s strong roots in street photography, it’s no surprise that there are also excellent photographers who didn’t move to Western Europe. Photo archives in Budapest are rife with street scenes from the country’s rich and embattled past. Photographers like János Müllner and Gyula Schäffer took advantage of Budapest’s lively street life, curious inhabitants, and varied architecture to create a body of work that is unique and accomplished.

Below enjoy a selection of street photographers past and present, many of which are of the collection of Budapest’s Kiscelli Museum.

Main Boulevard, 1956, Gyula Nagy, collection of the Kiscelli Museum

Main Boulevard, 1956, Gyula Nagy, collection of the Kiscelli Museum

1936, unknown photographer, collection of the Kiscelli Museum

1936, unknown photographer, collection of the Kiscelli Museum

Civil Defense Drill, 1940, Dezső Orelly, collection of the Kiscelli Museum

Civil Defense Drill, 1940, Dezső Orelly, collection of the Kiscelli Museum

1945, via MTI, unknown photographer, collection of the Kiscelli Museum

1945, via MTI, unknown photographer, collection of the Kiscelli Museum

Rákóczi Square, 1937, Gyula Schäffer, collection of the Kiscelli Museum

Rákóczi Square, 1937, Gyula Schäffer, collection of the Kiscelli Museum

Firewood shortage, 2019, collection of the Kiscelli Museum

Firewood shortage, 2019, collection of the Kiscelli Museum

Jewish Street Celebration, 1911, János Müllner, collection of the Kiscelli Museum

Jewish Street Celebration, 1911, János Müllner, collection of the Kiscelli Museum

Beyond the Balcony No.14, 1996, Illés Barna

Beyond the Balcony No.14, 1996, Illés Barna

Déak Square, 2006, Krisztina Erdei

Déak Square, 2006, Krisztina Erdei

Óbuda, Szőlő Street, 1995, Lenke Szilágyi

Óbuda, Szőlő Street, 1995, Lenke Szilágyi

Lehel Square, 2010, Máté Bartha

Lehel Square, 2010, Máté Bartha

Rákóczi Street, 2014, Gulyás Miklós

Rákóczi Street, 2014, Gulyás Miklós

If you are lucky enough to be in Budapest, you can find these street photos and more at a temporary exhibition at the Kicselli Museum. Entitled “IMAGE SCHEMA – The History of Street Photography in Budapest from the Beginning to Present” the exhibition is on display through June 26.

Flatpack Films is based in Budapest, Hungary. We are a film company that offers an inspiring and professional work atmosphere for our local and international clients. Since our inception, our focus has been providing the best of the best in terms of local production resources, locations, cast, and technical teams to ensure that whatever the production we facilitate, we do to highest standard possible.