Varga Mátyás Theatre History Collection and Exhibition House
The exhibition house is currently closed.
Mátyás Varga (1910-2002) was an outstanding figure of the Hungarian theatre world. He staged the world’s most beautiful plays and operas in the national theatres of Budapest, Szeged and Cluj-Napoca. His life’s work spans the 20th century Hungarian theatre history. He designed sets for dramas, operas and outdoor performances, and he is also considered as a legendary figure of Hungarian cinema. He started making ceramics around the age of 60, and his committed theatre-centric mindset shines through these works as well. He designed sets for the Szeged Open-Air Festival from 1936. Regarding artistic leadership, he represented the continuity between the two eras of the Festival. He knew what challenges the sky-high double towers of the Votive Church of Szeged meant, and he was well acquainted with the scenic features of the Dóm Square. Set designers, gaffers, painters consider him to be their master.
On 1 August 1987, the Varga Mátyás Theatre History Collection and Exhibition House opened in Szeged at Bécsi Avenue 11/A. The building, in need of renovation at the time, was purchased by set designer Mátyás Varga who had it renovated according to the plans of the awarded-winning architect István Tarnai. He decorated it with his own drawings and ceramics and donated the place to the city of Szeged. The exhibition house has been operating as part of the Móra Ferenc Museum since its dedication.
In the nearly 300 m2 floor area of the three-storey exhibition house, there are posters and photo material evoking the history of the 85-year-old Szeged Open-Air Festival, surrounded by perspective drawings, ceramics and graphic drawings, all of which present Mátyás Varga’s seven decades of work.
Wandering in Móra’s Woods – the Green Móra (Móra Ferenc Museum)
Permanent exhibition about the writer and former director of our museum, Ferenc Móra
Writer, poet, journalist, archaeologist, and librarian Ferenc Móra was an employee of our museum for thirty years and its director from 1917 until his death.
Móra, who was a committed conservationist, recognized the importance of environmental protection a hundred years ago, and this message and aspect of his life’s work are even more important and relevant today. Accordingly, the exhibition presents Ferenc Móra’s course of life and his abundant, far-reaching work through his intimate relationship with nature.
In Móra’s magical forest, we can get acquainted with the life of a writer who had university degrees in geography and natural history. With the help of quotes, objects, pictures, letters, film excerpts, and interactive games hidden in the tree trunks, we can discover the inspiring thoughts, humane and liberal views, overwhelming passions, poetry, playfulness, humour and unwritten novels of this nature-loving person. We can write love poems with him, decorate his photo with his sweetest flowers, and find out what kind of plant or animal he wanted to be if he was not born a human. We can meet family members, lovers, life-determining characters, plants, animals and people related to Móra.
We hope that the exhibition will equally appeal to those who enjoy literature, to foreign visitors who do not speak our language, to Móra’s fans, and to all those who come to know his works, thoughts and personality through this exhibit.
The viewing level of the Móra Ferenc Museum
The two lookouts on the top of the Móra Ferenc Museum indulge visitors with a view of the centre of Szeged from above. From the smaller lookout we can see the surroundings of Széchenyi Square, while from the larger lookout one can get a view of the Tisza and the Downtown Bridge. In addition, visitors can use a chronoscope in the larger lookout: this special device reveals the view of Szeged downtown in the 1870s.
In the foyer of the lookouts in the museum’s attic, a small exhibition presents the former downtown of Szeged: visitors can travel back to the 1870s with the help of a 3D animation. The animation shows the former buildings and view of the city centre; by touching each building, their history gets revealed. In addition, visitors can learn about the history of the Móra Ferenc Museum, too.
How to approach the exit to the viewing level: go to the attic through the spiral staircase. From there another flight of stairs leads to the small exhibition space. From here take the stairs to the roof.
Please note that the stairs are steep, we ask our elderly and young visitors to use them with due caution. The lookouts are closed in the event of inclement weather.
Our River and Its Surroundings (Móra Ferenc Museum)
Permanent natural history exhibition with photos by the award-winning photographer Bence Máté.
The basic idea of our new permanent natural history exhibition is connected to the “main street” of our city, the river Tisza, as well as the related Great Hungarian Plain and its wildlife.
Visitors can get acquainted with the exciting animal world and plant life of this area: deer, brown bear, wolf and other species of mammals and birds are presented for those interested in natural sciences. In the loft, visitors can learn about the use of herbs, and in the children’s activity room they can expand their knowledge by playing interactive games: in the holes of the heaven-high tree, birds and puzzles await the young and old alike.
The exhibition is based on the technical achievements of the 21st century: in the corridor a digitized board with a poem by Gyula Juhász welcomes our visitors, and in the exhibition room we can cross a digital stream with dry feet. We also aim to expand the knowledge of our visitors with additional photos and information on the screens and terminals.
Take a Trip into the Past – The History of Szeged (Castle and Stone Store)
The permanent exhibition of the Castle presents several important historical events from the past of Szeged: visitors can learn about the history of the former Castle of Szeged, the world of witch trials and outlaws, and the destruction of the Great Flood.
The old Szeged and its forgotten castle
For starters, visitors can watch a short film about the history of the castle and the city, after which they can immerse themselves in more detailed separate chapters of Szeged’s history with the help of a timeline table. The banners on the walls contain brief information about the history of the castle and the surrounding city. Objects at the end of the nave also represent this story, corresponding to each era, in a layered arrangement.
Witches put on the scales
With the help of an installation, visitors can stand a witch-test: it will turn out whether they would have been labelled a witch hundreds of years ago. In addition, they can get interesting information about the witch trials in Szeged, the related expressions used in the vernacular, and the ethnographic aspects of witchcraft.
“My comrades, a thousand outlaws…”
Visitors can get to know the life of Sándor Rózsa, his actions, the way he was judged by the people of this region and how his myth has survived. A banner on the wall provides more information about the ethnographic approach to the outlaw world.
An installation illustrates the atmosphere of the prison once operating in the Castle of Szeged. The outer wall of the prison is made up of small lockers in which we can face incarcerated outlaws in the form of photographs, but we can also find strange objects here.
„The dam broke under the torrent with a big crash”
This section presents the events related to the flood that largely determined the life of the city: the water engulfing Szeged, charity initiatives, and reconstruction. The exhibition closes with a special wall: the map of Szeged before and after the flood is shown in front of a bubbling water panel.
From the exhibition space visitors can also step out to the castle’s courtyard on the river side. Here, they will find the completely renovated stones archive, which has been expanded to the part of the yard facing the museum. Some more other interesting archaeological objects and stone installations await them here.
The Famous Town of Szeged – Permanent ethnographic exhibition (Móra Ferenc Museum)
Szeged has a special place among the cities of the Southern Great Plain. It has been an important waterway and commercial centre since the Middle Ages, and became a major, populous city in the 19th century. Settlers from Szeged migrated to the repopulated parts of Bačka, Banat and Temesköz regions and to the Homokhátság (Sand Ridge) from the end of the 19th century. Many settlements around Szeged, now independent, also developed from the former farm centres belonging to the town. The common treasure of the members of the “nation of Szöged”, comprising of the those who had moved from the town as well as the current inhabitants of the city, are the “ö” dialect, the traditions interwoven with Catholicism, diligence, and the ever-present loyalty to the hometown.
The exhibition focuses on fishing, shipbuilding, farming on sand, animal husbandry, viticulture, and the famous pepper cultivation in Szeged, as well as the famous handcrafts that flourished in the 19th century and survived until the middle of the 20th century: knife making, slippers making, indigo dye craft. The special home industry of Tápé, the bulrush weaving and the objects of the pilgrimage reflecting the religious reverence of the people living in the Szeged region are also on display.
In addition to the objects, ethnography-related archive photographs and short documentary excerpts enrich the exhibition.
All That’s Gold – A collection on view (Móra Ferenc Museum)
THE EXHIBITION IS TEMPORARILY CLOSED DUE TO RENOVATION.
Thank you for your understanding.
The vast majority of the archaeological objects in the gold collection of the Móra Ferenc Museum are finds from various excavations. Among the objects collected by the middle of the 20th century, there are several that were found randomly during unauthorized excavations. Many real stories and legends circulate about rare and valuable archaeological finds, gold treasures, which changed hands even before the experts could have learned about their existence.
One of the main units in the “All That’s Gold” collection is archaeological gold. Each piece is unique, artistically shaped, and implies the high craftsmanship and aesthetic taste of the artisans of the given era.
One of the most important treasures of the collection is the Hun gold find from Nagyszéksós, which was unearthed from the vineyards of farmer Mátyás Bálint in Nagyszéksós-puszta in 1926 by Ferenc Móra, the museum’s director at the time. According to the legend, similar gold had been found in the area before, which the children – not knowing that it was gold – exchanged among themselves for pumpkins and apples. As it turned out later, these were pieces of the largest Hun gold treasure to date, out of which about 150 objects, a total of more than a kilogram of gold, are still preserved in the Móra Ferenc Museum.
Archaeological collection on view (Móra Ferenc Museum)
THE EXHIBITION IS TEMPORARILY CLOSED DUE TO RENOVATION.
Thank you for your understanding.
The archaeological collection of the Móra Ferenc Museum has been on view since October 2018. In this new exhibition space, visitors can see a total of 3000 objects, , spanning about 8000 years. The so-called antiquities from the time of museum directors János Reizner, István Tömörkény and Ferenc Móra were previously stored in warehouse and now they are on view for the first time. The finds include 1500-year-old goose eggs, mummified hands and feet, Roman candles, and the copper treasure of Szillér, which is famous throughout Europe.
In addition, the exhibition includes various work equipment, everyday items and weapons, as well as cultic artefacts with a special role of turning away harm or evil influences. The exhibit also reveals what the firedog was used for, what human-sized storage vessels and Gepids-era shields looked like, and what the 8000-year-old steatopygic idols or bone skates were.