Chapter 3. Sándor Bortnyik and an interwar Hungarian children’s book
This chapter examines the origins and various versions of the only children’s book known to have been produced by the Hungarian modernist artist Sándor Bortnyik. A member of the radical modernist <i>Ma</i> group, Bortnyik spent the years 1922–1925 in Weimar, though not at the Bauhaus. When he returned to Hungary, he brought with him the new German ideal of the <i>Gebrauchsgraphiker</i>, a graphic artist who reconciles the commercial with the artistic, an idea which informed his work throughout the 1920s. A critical and influential figure in Hungarian poster and advertising design as well as the founder of an influential private art school, Bortnyik transferred to his children’s book, eventually published in Hungarian, German and English, the aesthetics of poster advertising, producing a book which, in the end, could, like an advertising poster, wordlessly transmit its idea.