Nicolás Muller (born Miklós Müller, 1913, Orosháza, Hungary – 2000, Llanes, Asturias, Spain) enriches the extraordinary roster of worldwide recognized Hungarian photographers. Jewish-born Muller spent the years before World War II in his native Hungary, but then, like most Jews, he was forced to emigrate to save his life. During this period, he visited Italy, France, Portugal, Morocco, and then chose Spain as his permanent home.
He witnessed an era that left Europe scarred: he was faced with the horrors of Nazism at the very beginning of its brutality, and in his search for a free society, he visited many countries which were under the influence of Nazi barbarism, such as Austria, Italy, and France, or which were victims of internal conflicts and suffered from authoritarianism, such as Portugal and Spain. Eventually, he settled in Madrid in 1947.
This exhibition explores the landscapes of a lifelong journey and the countries where Nicolás Muller lived. It includes 126 mostly unpublished photographs from the period 1930–1967, being made specially for this occasion, upon the request of the Cervantes Institute and the Ministry of Culture of Spain.
Nicolás Muller always strived to create a selection of his best 100 photographs, but, as it turned out later, there are many more photos that deserve to be shown to the public.
In 2015, when Nicolás Muller’s studio in Madrid closed for good, his daughter Ana Muller, a photographer herself, came across a long-forgotten box with 3,000 negatives. Seeing the exceptional quality of the photographs, she decided to introduce some of the unpublished photos to interested audiences, while also taking the opportunity to make public some of the unpublished material held by the Regional Archive of the Autonomous Community of Madrid.
In fact, several of the photographs shown here have been used to illustrate various publications which involved major modifications, but now these photos are also available in their original format. The exhibition will also provide an opportunity to get a broader picture of Nicolás Muller’s work than we have seen so far.