Gyorgy Kepes

György Kepes was a photographer, painter, and educator renowned for pioneering practices and theories that bridged technology and the arts. Born in northern Hungary, Kepes initially studied painting at the Academy of Fine Arts in Budapest. However, he soon abandoned conventional art forms in favor of ones he felt were more socially relevant, such as photocollage, and went on to work with fellow avant-garde Hungarian artist László Moholy-Nagy in Berlin, where the two collaborated on film and stage projects. They fled Nazi rule in 1937, settling in Chicago, where Kepes directed the Light and Color Department at Moholy-Nagy’s New Bauhaus school (later the Chicago Institute of Design). Then, in 1946, he joined the faculty of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, where he founded the Center for Advanced Visual Studies in 1967, a groundbreaking organization dedicated to the creative collaboration between artists and scientists. Although he had previously abandoned painting, he returned to the medium around 1950, creating large-scale, organically abstract canvases with richly colored glazes.