Valuable collection of silver and prints to go on display at Mikkel Museum

Art Museum of Estonia
Mikkel Museum

Press release no. 119
10 December 2012

On Saturday, 8 December, the Mikkel Museum will open an exhibition dedicated to the Alur Reinans art collection, entitled “A Collector’s Passion. Silver and Prints from the Reinans Collection”. The exhibition presents silver made from the 17th through the 20th centuries in areas now part of Estonia, as well as 18th- and 19th-century graphic art on Estonian themes and post-war work by Eduard Wiiralt. The exhibition is accompanied by a comprehensive catalogue introducing the Reinans art collection and by public programmes.

Journalists are invited to an event introducing the exhibition on Friday, 7 December at 16:00, hosted by one of the exhibition’s curators, Kersti Kuldna-Türkson.

“In 2012, the Art Museum of Estonia received an invaluable gift: the Reinans family donated a large collection of art consisting of several hundred pieces of silver and a selection of prints related to Estonia from the 17th–20th centuries,” said the Director General of the Art Museum of Estonia, Sirje Helme. “Alur Reinans was a founding member of the Art Museum of Estonia Friends of Art Society and an active participant in all events.”

The collection was bequeathed to the museum by Sven Alur Reinans (1932–2010), an Estonian-born cultural figure who spent most of his life in Sweden and whose greatest passion was collecting art. He was especially fascinated by silver from Estonia, which he acquired over a period of decades, primarily from Sweden at auctions and from antique shops. The result was a collection that represents not just work from silversmiths in the larger cities of Tallinn and Tartu, but from many other towns, such as Narva, Pärnu, Rakvere and Haapsalu.

“As Reinans collected not just luxury items but also simpler silver tableware and household items, his full collection gives a broad overview of the different types of objects made of silver in Estonia in different eras. As a result, the Reinans silver collection is unique among Estonian museums,” said one of the exhibition curators, Kersti Kuldna-Türkson.

Besides silver, Reinans was also interested in Estonian prints. A key addition to the Art Museum of Estonia’s Eduard Wiiralt collection is a selection of the best-known Estonian graphic artist’s post-war work, which illustrate his creative pursuits in his late period. The museum has also received as a gift several dozen prints in the 18th–19th-century Baltic German Estica genre, primarily depicting Estonians in folk costume.

The Art Museum of Estonia thanks the family of Alur Reinans for the generous, invaluable gift, as well as the Cultural Endowment of Estonia and the Art Museum of Estonia Friends of Art Society for their support of the exhibition.

The exhibition curators are Kersti Kuldna-Türkson, Anu Mänd (silver), Anne Untera and Mai Levin (prints); the exhibition designer is Mari Kurismaa and the graphic designer is Mari Kaljuste.

The exhibition “A Collector’s Passion. Silver and Prints from the Reinans Collection” will be open at Mikkel Museum until 5 May 2013.

More information:
Kersti Kuldna-Türkson
Exhibition curator
tel 5340 6984
Mikkel Museum
Weizenbergi 28