The Power of Things
The exhibition The Power of Things focuses on a number of works in the Niguliste Museum from the Late Medieval and Early Modern Period, among them the great painting Danse Macabre by the Lübeck master Bernt Notke and the altarpiece of the Virgin Mary of the Brotherhood of the Black Heads by the Master of the St Lucy Legend from Bruges. Placing them side by side with the objects from the collections of the Tallinn City Museum and the Estonian History Museum, a meaningful dialogue develops between the world of painted and material objects.
Silver Documents. Artisan Pendant Shields from the 17th to 19th Centuries
The Silver Collection at the Art Museum of Estonia has the largest number of historical artisan pendant shields in Estonia: almost 300. Most of them have never been exhibited. The exhibition introduces the various functions of pendant shields and provides a survey of their artistic development through the centuries.
Curators: Anu Mänd and Tarmo Saaret
Five Forgotten Paintings
For the first time, five large-scale religious paintings from the Art Museum of Estonia, which have been neglected for almost a century, will be exhibited. The goal of the exhibition is to reveal, layer by layer, the origins and fate of the works from the 17th and 18th centuries.
Curator: Merike Kurisoo
Kadri Mälk. Testament.
Graceful and subtle, yet wild and independent, is what describes the work of Kadri Mälk, the founder of an internationally-renowned Estonian school of jewellery. For Kadri, a jewel is perfectly sufficient as a jewel and she does not strive to be outside its intimacy, its value or its closeness. Everything, which could be called a tradition, allows her to skilfully manage uncontrollable power, desperate passion and the will to life with all its acceptances and refusals, subjections and sovereignties.
Ars moriendi – the Art of Dying
The exhibition examines how the meaning of death, man’s fate after death and remembering the dead were reflected in medieval art and the art of the early modern age. In addition to artworks, archaeological and cultural-historical items help to cast light on the topic.
Villem Raam as a Photographer
The exhibition, opened on the 100th anniversary of the birth of Villem Raam (1910–1996), introduces the side of the oeuvre of the outstanding art historian that has previously been in the background – his photography. Approximately 50 photos from the years 1936–1982, mostly on architectural themes, are being exhibited. The result is a unique photo chronicle of the history of architecture that casts light on the lifework of the master.
Simultaneously with the exhibition, a special issue of the Baltic Journal of Art History dedicated to Villem Raam has been published.
Bernt Notke – Between Innovation and Tradition
In the year 2009, five hundred years will have passed since the death of Bernt Notke (ca. 1430/40–1509) – one of the most famous artists of the late-medieval Baltic Sea region. Notke, who was an outstanding painter and wood carver, worked mainly in Lübeck and Stockholm and ran a large workshop. He lived on the border between the Middle Ages and Early Modern Times, and his work is characterised by a combination of centuries-old traditions and innovative motifs, techniques and materials. Tallinn has two of Notke’s masterpieces: Danse Macabre in the Niguliste Museum, and the retable of the high altar in the Church of the Holy Ghost. Other better known works of art by Notke can be found in Lübeck, Stockholm and Århus. The aim of the photo exhibition is to give an overview of the works produced in Notke’s workshop and to explain the historical and liturgical context of his work.
Church Bells in Estonia
The number of church bells that have survived in Estonia is relatively large and the selection is diverse. This exhibition provides an overview of the various styles of church bells, while objects, illustrative photos and drawings, as well as diagrams are also displayed. Since the best of the Niguliste Museum’s permanent exposition includes medieval art treasures, the primary goal of this exhibition is to introduce the older, more valuable and unique church bells that have survived in Estonia. The exhibits originate from Estonian museums, churches, congregations, and private collections.
Curators: Juhan Kilumets and Tarmo Saaret