Ateneumin taidemuseo / Konstmuseet Ateneum / Ateneum Art Museum

The opening of late 2019 exhibitions to be advanced by one week: Through My Travels I Found Myself – Helene Schjerfbeck and Finnish Artists in Ruovesi to open already on 15 November 2019

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The exhibitions scheduled to open at the Ateneum Art Museum in November will run for one week longer. The exhibitions Through My Travels I Found Myself – Helene Schjerfbeck and Finnish Artists in Ruovesi will, contrary to a previous announcement, open already on 15 November 2019, and will be on display until 26 January 2020. The common theme of the exhibitions, which divide the Ateneum’s third floor exhibition space in two, is the importance of place in an artist’s work. In addition to Helene Schjerfbeck, the names to be featured at the Ateneum in late 2019 and early 2020 include Werner Holmberg, Akseli Gallen-Kallela, Elga Sesemann, Hugo Simberg and Ellen Thesleff, all of whose works will be on display at the Finnish Artists in Ruovesi exhibition.

Helene Schjerfbeck: Girls Reading (1907). Finnish National Gallery / Ateneum Art Museum. Photo: Finnish National Gallery / Hannu Aaltonen.
Helene Schjerfbeck: Girls Reading (1907). Finnish National Gallery / Ateneum Art Museum. Photo: Finnish National Gallery / Hannu Aaltonen.

Through My Travels I Found Myself to introduce new Schjerfbeck works to Finland

The exhibition Through My Travels I Found Myself – Helene Schjerfbeck will include works that have not previously been shown in Finland. These include Chickens amongst Cornstooks (circa 1887), which was painted in St Ives and discovered in the United Kingdom, and A Girl with a Madonna (1881) from the Helsingborg Museums. The painting Narcissus (1908–1909), which is part of the Ateneum collection and was recently discovered underneath the work Costume Picture I (1908–1909) during conservation, will also be on display. 

An exhibition of works by Helene Schjerfbeck (1862–1946), which is being shown at the Royal Academy of Arts in London until 27 October 2019, has met with an enthusiastic reception in the UK. The exhibition has been extensively featured in international media, and it has been covered by the BBC, Harper’s Bazaar, The Art Newspaper, The Economist, The Guardian and The Observer, among others. The exhibition that Finns get to see at the Ateneum will be more than twice the size of the one staged in London. It is curated by Anna-Maria von Bonsdorff, chief curator at the Ateneum.

Through My Travels I Found Myself – Helene Schjerfbeck describes how Helene became Helene, and how a talented student grew into one of the most influential artists in our history. The exhibition focuses specifically on Schjerfbeck’s years of travel, during which she stayed in Paris, Pont-Aven in northern France, Fiesole in Italy, and St Ives in England at the end of the 19th century. What was the importance of travel for her work and working methods – and how did it influence her art when she returned to her home country?

The works in the exhibition include landscapes, still lifes, and depictions of people who were important to the artist. The exhibition also includes 16 of Schjerfbeck’s self-portraits from the period between 1884 and 1945, presented in a chronological order, which makes for an interesting viewing experience. In total, the exhibition features more than 130 paintings, drawings and sketchbooks.

The exhibition at Ateneum's website

Finnish Artists in Ruovesi to feature rarely seen works by Gallen-Kallela, Simberg and Thesleff

Ruovesi and its surroundings in Pirkanmaa have attracted artists since the 1820s. All the artists who have operated in the region are linked by an interest in the spirit of the place, and its nature, people and culture. How has this influenced the art of those who have worked in Ruovesi? The exhibition presents works that depict the people and landscapes of the region, along with artists’ self-portraits. The exhibition is curated by the keeper of prints and drawings at the Ateneum, Anu Utriainen. A total of 140 works are on display.

Akseli Gallen-Kallela (1865–1931), Ellen Thesleff (1869–1954) and Elga Sesemann (1922–2007) all had their own villas built in Ruovesi. Werner Holmberg (1830–1860) and Hugo Simberg (1873–1917) also took a liking to the region. Other artists featured in the exhibition are Lauri Anttila, Gabriel Engberg, Kalle Löytänä and Louis Sparre. The exhibited works date from the 1850s to the 1980s. 

Akseli Gallen-Kallela had a ‘wilderness studio’, Kalela, in Ruovesi, which he himself designed as a home for his family in the mid-1890s, after having fallen in love with the region’s rugged nature. Exhibits by Gallen-Kallela include paintings depicting the people of the region, Kalevala-themed prints, and sketches for frescoes he created for the Finnish pavilion at the 1900 Paris Exposition, which are rarely seen in public. The exhibition also features ex libris and prints made by Gallen-Kallela for his friends and family in Kalela. These feature subject matter through which he processed the grief caused by the loss of his daughter, Marjatta. 

Gallen-Kallela was one of the first Finns to become interested in printmaking, and Hugo Simberg came to Gallen-Kallela to study it under his tutelage. In addition to printmaking, Simberg was fuelled by the rustic culture of the region surrounding Kalela, which inspired the devil figures, death and natural mysticism in his works. The exhibition displays all 25 of Simberg’s watercolour and gouache works in the Ateneum collection, including Frost (1895) and The Garden of Death (1896).

There will be an exceptional exhibit on display by Ellen Thesleff: the beloved Self-Portrait (1894–1895), which is rarely shown at exhibitions because of its fragility. Other Thesleff works on display include landscapes of Murole in Ruovesi.

The exhibition at Ateneum's website

Events related to the exhibitions 

See all events at Ateneum's website

Book your place for a guided tour or an exhibition intro
Guided tours of the exhibitions are organised only outside the normal opening hours of the museum (in Finnish, tickets €30/€20, includes admission to the museum). There are more exhibition intros to the exhibitions held in the Ateneum Hall (in Finnish, tickets €10, no admission to the museum). A number of places for both are available in the Ateneum webshop. You can also book an own guided tour for your group in other languages. 

Thursdays 10 Oct, 24 Oct, and 7 Nov 2019, 17:00
“Waiting for Helene” lecture series
Ateneum Hall. Get an in-depth understanding of Helene Schjerfbeck from the Ateneum experts before the artist’s exhibition opens! The lecturers are the chief curator Anna-Maria von Bonsdorff; the keeper of prints and drawings, Anu Utriainen; and the director of the Ateneum Art Museum, Marja Sakari, who will interview the conservator Kirsi Hiltunen and the painter Anna Retulainen, who has studied Schjerfbeck’s works. In Finnish. Tickets €25/10 (includes admission and coffee/tea). Tickets from the Ateneum webshop.

Sat 16 Nov, noon
Helene Schjerfbeck lecture: Jeremy Lewison The Mirror and the Mask
Ateneum Hall. The lecturer is Jeremy Lewison, curator of the Helene Schjerfbeck exhibition presented at the Royal Academy of Arts in London. In English. Admission is included in the museum entrance fee, or with a Museum Card or a Friends of the Ateneum membership card.

Thu 12 Dec 2019, Thu 9 Jan 2020 and Wed 15 Jan 2020, 17:00
“Finnish Artists in Ruovesi” lecture series
Ateneum Hall. In Finnish. The lecturers are the curator Anne-Maria Pennonen; the keeper of prints and drawings at the Ateneum, Anu Utriainen; and the art historian and researcher Nina Kokkinen from the University of Turku. Admission is included in the museum entrance fee, or with a Museum Card or a Friends of the Ateneum membership card.

9–17 January 2020
Theatrical performance: Minä maalaan teidät kaikki (‘I will paint all of you’)
Seven additional performances of a play about Helene Schjerfbeck, entitled Minä maalaan teidät kaikki (‘I will paint all of you’), will be staged in the Ateneum Hall in January 2020. The play is written by Iida Hämeen-Anttila and directed by Kati Outinen. The roles are played by Kati Outinen and Annatuuli Saine. Tickets from the Ateneum webshop.

  

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Tue, Fri 10:00–18:00 | Wed, Thu 10:00–20:00 | Sat, Sun 10:00–17:00 | Mon closed

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Contacts

Anna Kari, Communications Officer, tel. +358 40 717 8185, anna.kari at ateneum.fi

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Images

Helene Schjerfbeck: Girls Reading (1907). Finnish National Gallery / Ateneum Art Museum. Photo: Finnish National Gallery / Hannu Aaltonen.
Helene Schjerfbeck: Girls Reading (1907). Finnish National Gallery / Ateneum Art Museum. Photo: Finnish National Gallery / Hannu Aaltonen.
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Helene Schjerfbeck: Self-Portrait, Black Background (1915). Finnish National Gallery / Ateneum Art Museum, Hallonblad Collection. Photo: Finnish National Gallery / Yehia Eweis.
Helene Schjerfbeck: Self-Portrait, Black Background (1915). Finnish National Gallery / Ateneum Art Museum, Hallonblad Collection. Photo: Finnish National Gallery / Yehia Eweis.
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Helene Schjerfbeck: Chickens amongst Cornstooks (c. 1887). Finnish National Gallery / Ateneum Art Museum. Photo: Finnish National Gallery / Hannu Karjalainen.
Helene Schjerfbeck: Chickens amongst Cornstooks (c. 1887). Finnish National Gallery / Ateneum Art Museum. Photo: Finnish National Gallery / Hannu Karjalainen.
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Helene Schjerfbeck: Narcissus (1908–1909). Finnish National Gallery / Ateneum Art Museum, Hoving Collection. Photo: Finnish National Gallery / Hannu Aaltonen.
Helene Schjerfbeck: Narcissus (1908–1909). Finnish National Gallery / Ateneum Art Museum, Hoving Collection. Photo: Finnish National Gallery / Hannu Aaltonen.
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Ellen Thesleff: Self-Portrait (1894–1895). Finnish National Gallery / Ateneum Art Museum. Photo: Finnish National Gallery / Hannu Aaltonen.
Ellen Thesleff: Self-Portrait (1894–1895). Finnish National Gallery / Ateneum Art Museum. Photo: Finnish National Gallery / Hannu Aaltonen.
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Elga Sesemann: Ruovesi, outbuilding (1947). Private collection. Photo: Finnish National Gallery / Hannu Aaltonen.
Elga Sesemann: Ruovesi, outbuilding (1947). Private collection. Photo: Finnish National Gallery / Hannu Aaltonen.
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Akseli Gallen-Kallela: Death and the Flower (1896). Finnish National Gallery / Ateneum Art Museum. Photo: Finnish National Gallery / Yehia Eweis.
Akseli Gallen-Kallela: Death and the Flower (1896). Finnish National Gallery / Ateneum Art Museum. Photo: Finnish National Gallery / Yehia Eweis.
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Hugo Simberg: The Garden of Death (1896). Finnish National Gallery / Ateneum Art Museum. Photo: Finnish National Gallery / Jouko Könönen.
Hugo Simberg: The Garden of Death (1896). Finnish National Gallery / Ateneum Art Museum. Photo: Finnish National Gallery / Jouko Könönen.
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Ateneumin taidemuseo / Konstmuseet Ateneum / Ateneum Art Museum
Ateneumin taidemuseo / Konstmuseet Ateneum / Ateneum Art Museum
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Ateneum Art Museum is Finland’s leading art museum, which houses Finnish art from the 19th century to the modern age. Ateneum’s main corporate partner is HOK-Elanto. Ateneum is part of the Finnish National Gallery, together with the Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma and Sinebrychoff Art Museum. www.kansallisgalleria.fi/en

 

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Konstmuseet Ateneums utställningar som öppnas i november får en tilläggsvecka. Utställningarna Resorna ledde till mig själv – Helene Schjerfbeck och Konstnärernas Ruovesi öppnas tidigare än aviserat redan den 15 november 2019 och pågår fram till den 26 januari 2020. En gemensam nämnare för utställningarna som delar in museets tredje våning i två delar är att de talar om platsens inverkan på konstnärens produktion. Årsskiftesutställningarnas konstnärer är utöver Helene Schjerfbeck bland annat Werner Holmberg, Akseli Gallen-Kallela, Elga Sesemann, Hugo Simberg och Eller Thesleff i utställningen Konstnärernas Ruovesi.

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