Five Forgotten Paintings 16/09/2017 – 26/08/2018

Niguliste Museum
Adult: Niguliste Museum
  • Family: Niguliste Museum
  • Discount: Niguliste Museum
  • Adult ticket with donation: Art Museum of Estonia

Five Forgotten Paintings

This exhibition brings to the viewer five large religious paintings from the collections of the Art Museum of Estonia that have never been exhibited before. The works, forgotten for almost a century, are unknown to both art historians and wider audiences. The goal of the exhibition is to reveal, layer by layer, the origin and fate of the paintings, created during the 17th and 18th centuries. The exhibited paintings were commissioned and painted for the churches of Estonia to serve as altarpieces on the high altars; to commemorate and remind us of particular individuals as epitaphs, or point to Christian values and rules of conduct as moralising paintings. These are not just paintings on the wall, anonymous works of art, but objects with meaning and stories of their own, created in accordance with the wishes of the commissioners, for a particular reason and for specific churches. By asking questions, searching for answers and providing the works with context, we find the people and stories, places and locations, associated with them. How the works have found their way from their original locations into the museum is equally significant. The aim of the exhibition is to display these local treasures of art from the Early Modern period, pointing to their versatility, as well as bring lesser known Lutheran art into focus for the 500th anniversary of the Reformation.

Exhibition curator: Merike Kurisoo

Designed by: Tuuli Aule


Conservators: Kristina Aas, Marika Mängel, Ingrid Pihelgas (Estonian Open Air Museum Conservation and Digitization Centre Kanut), Erle Kaur (Estonian Academy of Arts), Johanna Lamp (Art Museum of Estonia)


We thank: Krista Kodres, Aivar Põldvee, Estonian Open Air Museum Conservation and Digitization Centre Kanut, Overall Eesti AS