What role did Scandinavian and Baltic artists play in the international art arena during the 1920s? For the first time, important works from Northern Europe have been brought together in one exhibition, providing a unique opportunity to compare their similarities and differences.
Nowadays, cross-pollination between the Baltic and Scandinavian countries is taken for granted. This exhibition focuses on a time when things were different, but when there was nevertheless a willingness to participate in a larger, European fellowship of artists and a great need to connect with international movements of art. This exhibition gives visitors the opportunity to become acquainted with our common Northern European history, seen from a fresh perspective.
When we read about the art created by artists from Scandinavia and the Baltic, the usual approach is to look at how they were influenced by their periods of residence in major cities such as Berlin and Paris, studying under masters such as Pablo Picasso, Fernand Léger, Amédée Ozenfant, Le Corbusier and André Lhote. In this exhibition, however, we focus on each individual artist’s unique contribution to the art scene of the times, thereby revealing the impact these artists from Northern Europe themselves had on art developments in Paris and Berlin. In addition to showing works by the Swedish artists Otto G. Carlsund, Erik Olson and Gösta Adrian-Nilsson (GAN), the Danish artists Franceska Clausen, and Thorvald Hellesen, Ragnhild Keyser, Ragnhild Kaarbø and Charlotte Wankel from Norway, the exhibition will present a rich selection of works by Baltic artists and their European mentors.
The catalogue published in conjunction with the exhibition will present a network of art dealers, curators and art critics who played a key role in disseminating avant-garde art and the wide variety of idioms that emerged during this decade.
After showing at the Henie Onstad Kunstsenter, the exhibition will travel to Estonia, where it will be shown at the KUMU Art Museum.