Helsingin yliopisto


Helsingin yliopiston verkkojulkaisut

Helsingin yliopisto, Helsinki 2006

Kansallista vai modernia

Taidegrafiikka osana 1930-luvun taidejärjestelmää

Erkki Anttonen

Väitöskirja, kesäkuu 2006.
Helsingin yliopisto, humanistinen tiedekunta, taiteiden tutkimuksen laitos, taidehistoria.

The theme of this doctoral thesis is the Finnish printmaking in the years 1930-1939. During this decade, there were approximately 100 artists making prints in Finland. Indeed, the period was an especially important one for printmaking. Associations for printmakers were founded in Helsinki and Turku, training in the field was launched, and the number of printmaking exhibitions increased considerably. Through their national organisations, Finnish printmakers participated in many exhibitions abroad, interaction with Nordic printmakers being especially intense. Thus, a firm basis for post-war developments was created. However, printmakers' activity- which had continued throughout the 1930s - declined notably after the Winter War broke out in the autumn of 1939. As a result, the period 1930-1939 forms a coherent and distinct unity in Finnish printmaking history.

The study consists of two parts: the main text and an appendix in which the production of each printmaking artist active in the 1930s is examined separately. The study also includes a comprehensive list of the prints made in the course of the decade. One of the central themes is the printmakers' relationship to "Finnish nationalist" art and concepts of art in the 1930s. I analyse the various manifestations of this way of thinking in the visual arts of the period. Finnish fine art in the period between the world wars has usually been characterised as conservative, introverted and spiritually isolated from the modern European trends of the time. On the basis of this study, such a view is too simple. Many artists and printmakers adopted a modernistic notion of art that approached the newest in European modernism, including such trends as avant-garde classicism and general European new Objective Realism (Die neue Sachlichkeit). On the other hand, choosing Finnish nationalist motifs did not necessarily mean that the artist was opposed to modernism: modernist artists could still be interested in national themes.

The relationship of 1930s printmaking to the world of nationalist ideas is examined in this doctoral thesis from several perspectives. Towards the end of the main text, I examine the issue from the point of view of selected artists. Another feature that emerged during the study and turned out to be surprisingly widespread was the close relationship of many artists to religious, theosophical and pantheistic views. I deal with this issue in greater detail through a few representative printmakers.

The title page of the publication

Julkaisu on tekijänoikeussäännösten alainen. Teosta voi lukea ja tulostaa henkilökohtaista käyttöä varten. Käyttö kaupallisiin tarkoituksiin on kielletty.

© Helsingin yliopisto 2006

Viimeksi päivitetty 10.05.2006

Yhteystiedot, Contact information E-thesis Helsingin yliopisto, University of Helsinki