Tarkay was born in 1935 in Subotica on the Yugoslav-Hungarian border. In 1944, Tarkay and his family were sent to the Mauthausen Concentration Camp, until Allied liberation freed them a year later. In 1949 his family emigrated to Israel, living in a kibbutz for several years. Tarkay attended the Bezalel Academy of Art and Design from 1951, and graduated from the Avni Institute of Art and Design in 1956.
His art is influenced by French Impressionism, and Post-Impressionism, particularly Matisse and Toulouse-Lautrec. His work was exhibited at the International Art Expo in New York in 1986 and 1987. He has been the subject of three books, published by Dr.Israel Perry. Perry Art Gallery And Park West Gallery, his dealer.
His art is focussed on almost dream images of elegant women in classical scenes which draw you into an imaginary world.
Tarkay achieved recognition as a leading representative of a new generation of figurative artists. The inspiration for his work lies with French Impressionism and Post-Impressionism, particularly the color sophistication of Matisse and the drawing style of Toulouse-Lautrec. He drew upon the history of art to create many of his compositions, designing a kind of visual poetry from the aura of his cafes and intimate settings.
As well as being an acrylic painter and watercolorist, Tarkay was a master graphic artist and his rich tapestry of form and color was achieved primarily through the use of the serigraph. In his serigraphs, many colors are laid over one another and used to create texture and transparency.
When asked about his technique, Tarkay said it’s impossible to describe. “Can you explain your own handwriting?” he asked. He used his instinct to choose his colors and couldn’t define any other reason. “The color is coming,” he said. “When it’s finished, sometimes I’ll change the colors. It’s not something I think about.”
In the later years of his life, Tarkay shared his gifts by mentoring younger Israeli artists including, David Najar, Yuval Wolfson and Mark Kanovich who often visited his studio, worked alongside him and received his critiques. Tarkay was also the only artist to collaborate with Israeli master, Yaacov Agam (1928). He and Agam created two paintings which incorporated both artists’ imagery in a single painting.Wikipedia