Sonntag, 24.09.2017 13:58 Uhr

Konrad Vilhelm Mägi on display in Rome

Verantwortlicher Autor: Carlo Marino Rome, 13.09.2017, 09:28 Uhr
Nachricht/Bericht: +++ Kunst, Kultur und Musik +++ Bericht 2281x gelesen

Rome [ENA] In the heart of Rome, few meters from the Trinità dei Monti, the building that houses the National Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art is a former cloistered monastery, dating from the end of the XVI century and adjacent to the church of S. Giuseppe a Capo le Case. The monastery, home of the Discalced Carmelite order, was attested in 1600 in the area known as the “fratte” for its marginal position.

In the National Gallery, for the first time Rome hosts the works of Konrad Vilhelm Mägi (1 November 1878 – 15 August 1925), one of Estonia's eminent artists in the twentieth-century. The exhibition has been set up on the occasion of Estonia's presidency of the EU Council in the coming semester, by the Eesti Kunstimuuseum - National Museum of Estonian Art, in partnership with the Estonian Embassy in Rome. The art show will be hosted by the National Gallery, from 10 October to 28 January 2018.

Furthermore, the Gallery offers a sort of journey through shapes and colours and into the artistic and cultural history of Rome from the end of the nineteenth century, when the city became the capital of the young Italian state, to the crucial historical events of the new century and the disasters of world War II. Konrad Vilhelm Mägi is estimated as one of the most ''eccentric'' protagonists of the European art in the Twenties, around World War 1, and he was capable with various styles, touching some - especially expressionism, but remaining 'independent'. His landscapes and portraits are strong and fascinating with bright and powerful colours. Although he was fond of it, he never imitated Estonian traditional art.

Mägi had a very personal approach to painting, art which he dealt with for less than twenty years, since 1906, when he decided to quit his school in St. Petersburg to take refuge in the Aland Islands, a sort of Community of musicians, writers, painters and free men.Then he resided in Paris, Normandy and Norway. Restless, problematic, unstable man, Mägi went back to Estonia in the summer of 1912, where he was one of the founders of Pallas's Art School, which became a campus for dozens of artists. From 1918, the influence of Expressionism is manifest, fostered by Mägi's extreme sensitivity and emotional response to the anxious times: Pühajärv (Lake Püha); (1918–1920), Otepää maastik (Landscape of Otepää; (1918–1920).

Also influenced by Expressionism are his big figure compositions Pietà (1919), Kolgata (Golgatha) (1921).Mägi's new artistic period, begun on a trip to Italy, in the early 1920s, visiting Venice, Capri and Rome which brought about calmer tempers: Varemed Capril (Ruins in Capri; 1922–1923). Together with nature pictures, he painted flowers and portraits. Mägi's mostly beautiful female models express the Art Nouveau ideal of beauty: Holsti (1916). In his later portraits from the 1920s, a more serious temper is expressed: Madonna (1923–1924). The sun, the light, the colours of the Mediterranean Sea seemed to capture him, but the artist continued to deal with the problems of his multifaceted, uncertain existence.

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