The harmony of colors and their contrasts are the basis of artistic creation, like the line of notes in music. The color music of Estonian contemporary painting will be heard in the winter months at another exhibition in the private banking rooms of Swedbank's main building. As usual, this exhibition has also been completed in cooperation with the bank's long-time partner Haus Galeri.
At first glance, our art does not seem to be full of colors, but this is far from the truth. Estonian art, with its density of thought, restraint and intellectuality, is extremely sensitive to color. A selection of works by the most famous authors of Estonian modern art in the bank milieu proves this convincingly. Through spatial rhythms, works with abstract moods are exhibited, where each author has emphasized their own visions of color and the meaningful worlds hidden in them. The works of eight authors are exhibited, in eight different spatial settings, filling them with different color and emotional moods, which can be experienced as you delve deeper.'
In addition to the color emphasis, the value of the exhibited art has also been taken into account when selecting the works. The exhibition features the creations of artists appreciated by the general public as well as professionals in the field, several of whom have been regularly represented with their works in Haus Gallery's 25-year-old art auction collection. These are authors whose creations, in addition to aesthetic pleasure, also offer opportunities for investment. Names such as Jaan Elken, Anne Parmasto, Mari Roosvalt and Siim-Tanel Annus are represented, whose works' price increases at Haus modern art classics auctions have been significant in recent years, and a more detailed overview of which can be found in the archive of the auctions on the gallery's website, offering a comprehensive overview of the art market in the last quarter of a century.
Art as an investment is more and more in the topic orbit. Which are today's most valued authors and how this list changes and expands is a matter of bilateral professional cooperation between the gallery and the artists, where the artists' talent and personal vision of the world play a decisive role. In part, it also answers the question of how the price of art is formed or what affects it. Artists who, with their creative perspective, can generalize and reflect the life phenomena, attitudes and important meaningful points around us, going along with the rhythms of the world's changes and doing it in such a way that it speaks to and touches a larger audience, sooner or later are always appreciated. How to recognize these works in which such time-important manifestations are manifested? Of course, at this point it is recommended to consult with professionals who are familiar with the subject and will introduce you to the diverse world of art. On the other hand, we all intuitively perceive the value of good and very good art, because it speaks to us convincingly both in terms of aesthetics and content. In addition to the visual argument, the message of the work gives art an important power of durability and depth.
However, you can read more about each author of the exhibition, the important emphases and message of his work in the introductory text preceding the artist's works.
The curator of the exhibition, Piia Ausman, wishing you good exhibition experiences
LIIVIA LEŠKIN (1956)
Livia Leškin is known and recognized above all as a significant fashion designer. Born in 1956, graduated from the Estonian Academy of Arts in 1980 as a fashion designer, member of the Estonian Artists' Union since 1989, and founding member of the art group ON Grupp. From 1987 to 1995, she was a lecturer and professor in the field of fashion design at the Libyan Academy of Arts and a guest lecturer at several Scandinavian art colleges. He has appeared in numerous personal and group exhibitions as a fashion designer, costume designer, fashion illustrator, created large-format interior textiles using digital printing technology, and more.
Livia Leškin's paintings do not oblige you to look in one specific direction, but invite you to discover and interpret. Her work has not been completed as a result of logically guided thought, but as a result of fully experienced emotion.
ANNE PARMASTO (1952)
Anne Parmasto graduated from the Estonian National Art Institute in 1981 as a painter and theater decorator. Parmasto is a member of the Estonian Artists' Union, the Estonian Painters' Union and the Tartu Artists' Union. In 2002, she became the laureate of the Ado Vabbe art prize, and in addition to Estonia, her personal exhibitions have been held in Germany and the USA. Anne Parmasto's work is characterized by her interest in wildlife in all its forms. Her powerful color games are a unique exception compared to the usual matted-melancholic color use of Estonian art. Being so decorative at the same time, they are also uncompromising and straightforward. Parmasto expresses herself directly and forcefully through colors, encoding her views and imagination in the choice of colors, but also intelligent humor, amplifying the world both in form and motif. While living and working in Tallinn, Anne Parmasto has been connected to Tartu for a long time, working as a painting lecturer at the University of Tartu. In 2021, she was also awarded the Konrad Mägi award.
SIIM-TANEL ANNUS (1960)
Siim-Tanel Annus is an author whose creative nature is searching. He is known as a painting and action artist and a graphic artist who wrote himself into art history in the 1980s with boundary-pushing performances. In 1974–1978 he studied at Tõnis Vindi's studio, then from 1978–1984 art history at the University of Tartu, and in 1989 graphic arts at ERKI. The artist's exhibitions have taken place all over the world, but he considers the representation of Estonia at the 47th Venice Biennale in 1997 and the grand prix at the Nanjing International Art Festival in China in 2015 to be the most important. Through himself and special technical means, Annus tries to touch everything in his art. His pictures are worlds pure of objects, the motifs of which are often inspired by hints from nature. With all this, the artist tries to refer to the connection of the human mind with the experience of ages ago, from which, what can be drawn unconsciously is perhaps more true than what we can touch with our hands at the moment. The artist experiments with materials and colors and works more with his fingers than with a brush. Textures create a primary idea of the image, visible as a skeleton.
MARI ROOSVALT (1945)
Mari Roosvalt comes from a real family of artists, whose father Evald Okas has played an important role in the Estonian art scene, just like the artist's later husband Uno Roosvalt. Mari graduated from the Estonian National Institute of Art in 1969 with a major in painting, she started exhibition activities already in 1970. Roosvalt is a member of the Estonian Artists' Union (honorary member since 2015), the Estonian Watercolorists' Association and a board member of the Estonian Painters' Union. In addition to her work, she has worked as a teacher in general education schools, Tallinn University and, of course, the Estonian Academy of Arts. Roosvalt's work reflects the artist's own nature - a constant effort to express her emotional relationships with the world around her and its effect on her through signs and colors. Through color games, the artist merges the world and painting into a new unified whole. She is strongly influenced and inspired by travel. As her vision, Roosvalt has put foreign places and exotic nature on canvas again and again, as well as domestic natural rhythms. Every new place and environment or a rediscovered home place, if you delve into it creatively, broadens the horizons of the human soul, is one of the messages of Mari Roosvald's art.
TOOMAS ALTNURME (1973)
Toomas Altnurme has worked in all fields of painting, installations, sculpture, photography, mixed media, digital art. Participated in 50 sculpture symposiums around the world and opened sculptures in public places and parks: for example in the USA, Sumter South Carolina, Brazil, Chile, Russia, Taiwan, Denmark, England, France, Italy, Germany, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania. He has participated in 300 group exhibitions and his artworks are in parks, museums, government and private collections in more than 60 countries. Since 2014, Toomas Altnurme has been working as a lecturer in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates University. Altnurme's work is abstract, which speaks to us through the personal intrigue and peculiarities of his artistic expression. Altnurme's paintings are the colors themselves, emphatically and directly - layers of color that merge and flow into each other. As if the canvas surface were water, which could mix and shape these colors in its natural movement, leaving the impression of the possibility that the colors could change their places and contours in the finished work. At times, the colors pile up on Altnurme's painting surfaces in such abundantly thick layers that they create illusions of landscape forms.
IVIKA LUISK (1969)
Ivika Luisk is a painter and puppeteer who lives and works in Tallinn. She graduated from the Estonian Academy of Arts, majoring in painting and monumental painting, in 1995. and magistracy in 1998. Luisk is a member of the Estonian Artists' Union and the Estonian Painters' Union. The artist has had 15 personal exhibitions so far. She has appeared in several group exhibitions and has done artist work for 15 puppet films. An important place in her work is the mutual influence of man and nature, but not man being in nature, but rather observing it, participating in nature with all his attention. Ivika's paintings are close-up views of the relationship between colors and natural motifs, where one inspires the other, so many plants in her works can become life-sized by merging from one color state to another, becoming both captivatingly abstract and recognizable motifs that the viewer can play with in their own mental spaces.
ANDRO KÖÖP (1967)
Andro Kööp started active exhibition activities in 1985, mainly in the field of consumer and visual arts. In 1988, he became a founding member of the Estonian Designers' Union, later studying fashion art. This is how Kööp has balanced itself on the border between painting and design, sensitively perceiving and connecting the relationship between visual art and space. Kööp has been known as a radical avant-garde artist, designer and interior designer, which adds social, playful and decorative aspects to his selection of themes at the same time. The artist's works are always more or less spatial, to which he often adds plant motifs and spectrums of precious stones. The romantic and peaceful world created in this way is complemented by electric tones and the semi-transparent raster background, which has almost become the artist's trademark, which all fit equally well into both modern and classic interiors.
JAAN ELKEN (1954)
Jaan Elken graduated from the Tallinn Art Institute in 1977, majoring in architecture. From 1988 to 1997, however, he already taught painting there, and from 1997 he was also a professor at the Painting Department of the University of Tartu, and since 2017, an emeritus professor at the University of Tartu. Elken gained fame as a hyperrealist moving towards abstractionism in his later work, dealing with issues of European culture and place memory. An inevitable component of the artist's work is the lack of fixed ingredients, rather the author plays with urban landscapes and fragments of thoughts that focus on personal experience instead of hyperrealistic photogenicity. Often, in the works of the artist, you can find text passages from everyday experience or found objects, which can be viewed simultaneously through the prism of irony and nostalgia. Jaan Elken's modern work is a poeticization of the presence of the world through a powerful, abstract painting aesthetic.