Exhibitions 2010

I Love Malmö
5th floor
An exhibition of modern Nordic art from the collections of the Malmö Art Museum.

HARRO! A Classic of Finnish Pop Art
4th floor
The painter Harro Koskinen (b. 1945 in Turku) has become famous for his socio-critical world of paintings, inspired by Pop Art, particularly for his pink and yellow pigs living their lives in pig reality. Harro’s breakthrough occurred in 1969, when he had to start fighting for artistic freedom of expression at quite a young age. The controversy of his almost four-meter-long painting, titled The Messiah of Pigs, completed in 1969, made it into the newpapers, as it was considered to be a mockery of God. After that he was prosecuted for profanation of the national coat of arms (Coat of Arms of Pigs, 1969). The court found him guilty of a mockery of God. Over time, criticism of Harro’s works has mellowed and his pig has become a character much loved by the public.
The exhibition is a cooperation project with Turku Art Museum.
The exhibition is supported by Finnish Fund for Art Exchange (FRAME).

Painting in Normandy
3rd floor
The exhibition has been compiled on the basis of French art collections from Alain Tapié, Director of the Lille Art Museum, and displays 60 works of art by painters whose lives and work were closely connected with the romantic region of Normandy. The picturesque sea and beach of Normandy and the life of locals attracted several 19th-century artists, such as open-air painters and impressionists, for whom a life-like quality and closeness to nature had become the mottos of art. The display includes works by the world-famous artists Gustave Courbet, Eugène Boudin, Jean Baptiste Camille Corot, Charles Daubigny, Claude Monet, Albert Marquet and others. The painters, who visited Normandy or lived there, bring to the audience the aspirations of one epoch of art and the charm of a picturesque corner of the country.

POPkunst Forever!
Great Hall
An overview exhibition of the trends and different ideologies of Estonian Pop Art since the late 1960s. The exhibition focuses on the powerful coming of Pop Art into the Soviet cultural sphere and its continual mutations through several generations of artists until the present day.

Anton Starkopf. Legend of Estonian Sculpture
From the series “Classics of the Modernist Era”

3rd floor, B-wing
The works of Anton Starkopf (1889–1966) significantly influenced the development of modernist sculpture in 1920s and 1930s Estonia. The exhibition includes nearly 70 sculptures and 80 drawings from various art collections. The last time a comprehensive overview of the master’s body of work could be seen in Tallinn was at his personal exhibition at the Tallinn Art Hall in 1961.

Čiurlionis and His Time in Lithuanian Art
The Great Hall
The exhibition, assembled from the collections of the Kaunas art museum, delivers a series of major works by Mikalojus Konstantinas Čiurlionis (1875–1911), the Lithuanian artist best known in Europe. Čiurlionis is one of the grand and characteristic representatives of the art nouveau era: a neo-romantic and unusual symbolist, whose paintings are closely related to musical pieces.

The Dialogue of Earth and Water. Sculptures of Eero Hiironen
Kumu courtyard
The summer exhibition in the Kumu courtyard presents the works of the classic Finnish sculptor Eero Hiironen (b 1938). The main themes of the artist, a disciple of Finnish functionalism and Alvar Aalto’s school, are water, light and pure nature. The exhibition presents metal sculptures in various scales.

Tracing Neo-impressionism: Mägi and Finch
3rd floor, B-wing
The exhibition, assembled from the collections of Estonian and Finnish art museums, focuses on the early works of the painter Konrad Mägi (1878−1925) and his characteristic dotting technique, as well as the artist’s possible international influences, including the English-bred Belgian-Finnish artist Alfred William Finch (1854–1930).

Soviet Woman in Estonian Art
4th floor, B-wing
When Soviet power was established in Estonia, a new type of woman began to be imposed, expressed and asserted in art, photography, film etc. by specific character types. The exhibition looks at how the Soviet woman was portrayed and imagined, and the extent of the influence that these past experiences have on us today.

Painting in Process

5th floor
The exhibition studies some of the most interesting artists and ideas in contemporary painting, and offers an environment for experimental art. The gallery is split into two ideological zones, presenting both works that were completed in a studio using a long process, and new attitudes in art via the concepts of design and space. Kiwa has been invited to curate a separate theme block.

Metaphysical Landscapes in 1970s Estonian Graphics

4th floor, A-wing, graphics room
The purpose of the exhibition is to emphasize metaphysical landscapes as a particular phenomenon in Estonian graphics of the 1970s. The metaphysical effect came out of an image space that was empty, cleaned up of extraneous details and actions, and which caused a particular psychological effect: odd, dreamy and almost allegorical. The photo-realistic works that dominated the period (Urmas Ploomipuu and Kaisa Puustak) are oddly joined by more symbolic, stylized creations (Illimar Paul, Tõnis Vint and Mare Vint).

Photography from the Estonian Diaspora
4th floor, B-wing
The exhibition introduces remarkable photographers of Estonian background who worked in exile following World War II, in Europe and America. These artists include Priit Vesilind and Eric Soovere (USA), Vello Muikma (Canada), Rein Välme and Olav Heinmets (Sweden), and others. A selection of photographic material belonging to the cultural history of Estonia has also been selected from Estonian expatriate archives.

Estonian Art in Exile
The Great Hall
The two-year-long comprehensive study of Estonian exile art, by a work group that includes art experts from the Art Museum of Estonia, the Tartu Art Museum, and the Pallas art association, concludes with a large overview exhibition at the Kumu Great Hall this autumn, then moves to the Tartu Art Museum in the spring. A satellite exhibition will concentrate on ex-pat Estonian photography.

John Constable. From the Collections of the Victoria and Albert Museum
3rd floor, B-wing
The exhibition provides unique insight into the work process of England’s Romantic landscape painter John Constable (1776–1837), and charts the artist’s historical influence, which remains strong to this day.

Everything Is Going to Be Alright
5th floor
Eight video installations from seven authors will be exhibited at Everything Is Going to Be Alright, including works by international superstars and well-known local artists. The exhibition offers a selection of the best examples of classical video art from the past decade, through a loose thematic focus.

Sirje Runge. Great Love
5th floor
The exhibition presents the later masterpiece of Sirje Runge (b 1950), who rose to prominence in the mid-1970s with her geometric abstractionism. The gigantic-scale painting “Great Love” was described by the artist as “if creation was a state of unselfish love, then this painting would be the declaration of my love to the world.

Personal and Public Space in 1970s Estonian Graphics

4th floor, A-wing, graphics room
Estonian graphics continued its stable upward trend after the artistic breakthroughs of the 1960s. Significant influence came from optical art and surrealism. The different tendencies reinforced the black-and-white etched graphics that dealt with the artist’s internal perception and personal moods. The artists juxtaposed prescribed social themes with extreme subjectivity. The exhibition focuses on the examples of four graphic artists (Vello Vinn, Herald Eelma, Silvi Liiva and Marju Mutsu) to demonstrate the connections between the personal and public space, i.e. the transference of subjectivity to the cityscape.