The Ateneum Art Museum has the country’s oldest and largest art collection. The new collections exhibition presents well-loved classics alongside seldom-exhibited works of art. It draws new parallels and highlights works that have not been on show for a long time.
Stories of Finnish Art illustrates the development of art in Finland from 1809 until the 1970s. At the exhibition, the story of Finnish art is juxtaposed with international developments in art and contemporary social events. On display, side by side, are Finnish and international masterpieces from our collections, such as Le Corbusier’s Two Women (1939), Hugo Simberg’s The Wounded Angel (1903), Edvard Munch’s Bathing Men (1907–08), and Ilya Repin’s Portrait of Natalia Nordmann (1900).
The works on display in the new halls of modern art highlight the post-Second World War reconstruction period and the emergent media society. The exhibition will feature paintings, sculptures and prints by Finnish and foreign artists such as Anitra Lucander, Unto Pusa, Ulla Rantanen, Anita Snellman and Sam Vanni. Prints by foreign artists will be exhibited on a regularly changing basis. The exhibition will also include Eino Ruutsalo’s experimental films and advertisements.
The letters, sketchbooks, postcards and photographs on display in the archive hall vividly illustrate the daily lives of the artists. The dense, salon exhibition style recalls the history of the building, going back more than a century.
The exhibition team includes Susanna Pettersson, Museum Director; Timo Huusko, Chief Curator, Collections; Anu Utriainen, Curator; Erkki Anttonen, Special Researcher, Collections; Hanna-Leena Paloposki, Archive and Library Manager; and Riitta Ojanperä, Collections Management Director. The imaginative and memorable exhibition architecture has been created by Marcel Schmalgemeijer from the Netherlands and the spatial graphic design by Mariëlle Tolenaar.