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Tampere Art Museum - Home


2.6. - 9.8.2020

Joseph Alanen - Jugend • Kalevala • Tampere

Joseph Alanen (1885–1920) was one of the leading artists to depict subjects from the Kalevala epic. The Tampere Art Museum will prominently showcase a large selection of his works on subjects from the Kalevala, along with portrayals of folk life, religious subjects, prints and drawings. Alanen’s conception of the Kalevala epic was largely stylised. The characters are formalised, two-dimensional and decorative, with obvious influences from jugend (Art Nouveau). The tempera technique and ornamentality create an impression resembling a tapestry.

Alanen died of the Spanish flu at the age of 35. Despite this, he managed to paint almost a hundred works on subjects and themes from the Kalevala. The son of a foreman of Tampere, Alanen has remained in the margins of art history mostly because no comprehensive exhibition of his work has ever been held.

2.6. - 9.8.2020

Ilkka Väätti: Hommage à Olga, 2018. Kuva: Jouko Järvinen.

Ilkka Väätti - Hommage

This exhibition by visual artist Ilkka Väätti (born 1955) of Tampere presents his most recent work from the years 2017–2020. Consisting of over thirty paintings and two ‘architectons’, Hommage, is based on his interpretation of works by the best-known artists in the history of modern art and other less noted names. The paintings serving as examples represent geometric abstractionism from the period 1906–1940.

Ilkka Väätti began his career as an artist in the late 1970s and his works have been on show in dozens of solo and group exhibitions in Finland and abroad. He is a painter and printmaker who also constructs architectons. For Väätti, the latter are works influenced by architecture that combine painting and sculptural expression. Väätti is also known as a researcher and a pedagogue in the visual arts.

In his artistic expression, Ilkka Väätti operates between abstraction and freely reduced figurative motifs. His works are mostly executed in strong basic colours. Although they are abstract, they all find starting points in the history of art. Väätti’s Mundus series, on which he has worked since 1993 is based on his artistic reinterpretations of the masters of art history and practitioners. On the other hand, Hommage, the original idea of which emerged in the early 2000s. is based on new interpretations of modernist works of art.