Sights in Hortobágy
The statue of the Water Bearers
There are a number of statues across the public spaces in the centre of Hortobágy, with most of them being the works of sculptor Árpád Somogyi, winner of the Munkácsy Prize. One of the realist works on the everyday life and the people of Hortobágy is the statue of the Water Barriers, located near the Nine-Hole Bridge. The group of sculptures, dedicated in 1983, depicts local peasant women transporting precious water, meaning life, from one place to another. Although it is a popular photography spot for visitors to the Hortobágy region, it is still a pessimistic work of art, a symbol of the hopelessness of peasant life.
The statue of the Three Shepherds
Another iconic statue if the settlement is also the work of Árpád Somogyi, depicting three shepherds sitting across from each other. This statue, located near the Shepherds’ Museum since 1983, evokes the ancient traditions of shepherding. There are several copies of this statue: one in the Hungarian town of Kecskemét, one in Dallas and one in Los Angeles, while a 40-cm miniature version was exhibited in the Imre Égerházi Gallery.
The statue of a Shepherd Boy
The bronze statue of a shepherd boy in traditional attire, which has been located in front of the Shepherds’ Museum since 1968, is a representation of the men accustomed to a harsh life in the puszta. It is also the work of sculptor Árpád Somogyi.
Monuments to the victims of the Hungarian Gulag
The early 1950s was a sad period in the history of the Hortobágy, when thousands of people were deported from other parts of the country to forced labour camps in the area, which is commemorated by several monuments on the settlement.
One of them is the work of Sándor Haranghy, a memorial cross made of rails, standing along Route 33. The monument was dedicated by the sculptor in 1990 to the “Memory of Deportees to the Forced Labour Camps in Hortobágy.”
Another monument made of wood, dedicated to the memory of the victims of the Hungarian Gulag, is located in the part of the Hortobágy called Borsós. The work of Sándor Sófalvi, Transylvanian wood sculptor, this memorial was dedicated at the former location of the forced labour camp in Borsós in 2003, on the 50th anniversary of the deportations.
In the 1950s, the main building of Hortobágy Bird Park was one of the barracks in the forced labour camp in Hortobágy. The names of the hundreds of victims who lived here are preserved by a memorial wall on the wall of the building, the foundations of which have remained unchanged.