Kadriorg Museum showcases Finnish modernism from Estonian art collections

The Dance of Colors: Finnish Modernist Art
The Dance of Colors: Finnish Modernist Art Source: Ken Mürk/ERR

Several important works by Finnish artists from the early 20th century that are not well known in Finland are in Estonian art collections. These are on display at the exhibition "The Dance of Colors: Finnish Modernist Art" at the Kadriorg Art Museum in Tallinn.

"The Dance of Colors" is a selection of Finnish art from the first half of the 20th century from Estonian private collections and the Art Museum of Estonia, the Ateneum Art Museum, the Helsinki Art Museum and the Didrichsen Art Museum.

The exhibition also contains artworks that have stayed in Estonia since the 1930s and have not been recorded in Finnish art history.

"Väino Kunnas' 'Red Dance,' for example, is signed 1927, while the other works in the series were signed the following year. This implies that 'Red Dance' is the series's first and most important painting. There are many other works in this museum that the Finnish art community is unaware of and has no idea they exist," Timo Huusko, chief curator of the Ateneum Art Museum, told "AK."

The Kadriorg Art Museum exhibition provides an excellent opportunity to compare Estonian art classics from the same era with their Finnish contemporaries.

"The art scene and tradition emerged in Estonia at the turn of the 20th century, during the republic's proclamation. In Finland, art institutions, the art market and possibilities to study art were all established 50 to 60 years earlier. The surrounding framework, the context in which these works are created, remains very different," Kerttu Manniste, the exhibition's curator, said.

The Kadriorg Art Museum will host an exhibition of Finnish modernist art through the end of August. In May, there will also be a public seminar on the art scene in Estonian and Finland 100 years ago.


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Editor: Merit Maarits, Kristina Kersa

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