Photo taken in:Cluj NapocaYear when photo was taken:1952Country name at time of photo:RomaniaCountry name today:Romania
This is a photo that was taken in Kolozsvar just before my graduation from the Institute of Arts in 1952. None of the people in the picture are Jewish. Three of them are Romanian and the fourth one is Hungarian. They were my mates at the Institute of Fine Arts, it was a very jubilant group. I am the first from the left. This is a picture of us wrestling with Stefanescu Mircea, second from left, who is hanging on. My other friend, Inica is in the white shirt. Sandor Puskas is the first from the right. I don?t remember the name of the fourth person. The Institute of Fine Arts was located on an island in the lake in the Central Park of the city. There was a small bridge on the right side which we used to walk through to get to the building of the college. You can't see the building in this photo. I attended a course at the art school in 1947. It was kind of a party-organized class where some painters set up a workshop and taught us. I was there for a year and I even received a certificate. When I was accepted to the Hungarian Institute of Arts in 1948, I was put into the second year because they accepted my previous year from the art school. The institute had a mainly Hungarian management and at the time Zoltan Kovacs was the rector. In the morning I was an art student, and in the afternoon I was a high school student. I hadn't finished high school and needed to graduate because before that I couldn't have graduated from the Institute of Art. In 1949, they introduced dual language education, Romanian and Hungarian, the institute became the Ion Andreescu Institute of Art and Aurel Ciupe its rector. Then the institute got a building with an exhibition space in the Central Park. There were a lot of Hungarians who were gradually laid off from important positions. There were some excellent sculpting teachers at the institute, for instance Szervaciusz, who was mainly teaching painting techniques: carving, casting and things like that, but he never made it any further than lecturer. My art history teacher was a Jewish man, Nandor Balaska, who grew up in Hungarian culture and later emigrated to the West. There were subjects that were taught in both Hungarian and Romanian, so the teachers were required to speak both. I became an assistant teacher in anatomy in 1950 and was registered in the teaching staff. I was a student in the morning and an assistant teacher in the afternoon. I graduated from the institute in sculpture in 1953 but I stayed in the institute and climbed up the 'academic ladder'. As soon as I graduated I became an assistant, seven years from then a lecturer and finally a university professor. I was teaching the main courses - drawing, sculpting, and composition.