Espoo Museum of Modern Art

19.06.2013 - 12.01.2014

Aesthete extraordinaire: Birger Kaipiainen’s ceramic fantasies

This summer, EMMA offers a major showing of the works of Finnish ceramic artist Birger Kaipiainen (1915–1988) that is bound to question categories and raise eyebrows. During his half-century long career at the Arabia factory, he enjoyed a freedom to fulfil his creative visions untrammelled by the demands of industrial production.

Birger Kaipiainen went his own way. Although his unique, mysterious fantasies delighted contemporaries, they also estranged the advocates of modern design. Art circles wondered at his unrestrained decorativeness.

This aesthete extraordinaire in his own time appears in another light today: a singular visualiser and bold visionary who created his own fantasy world in ceramics.

Aesthete Extraordinaire / Birger Kaipiainen’s ceramic fantasies at EMMA 19.6.2013–12.1.2014. Curated by Harri Kalha and designed by Ilkka Suppanen, the exhibition contains unique pieces from the collections of Kyösti Kakkonen, the Design Museum, the Ateneum, the Helsinki Art Museum and private individuals. It will be accompanied by a lavishly illustrated catalogue written by Harri Kalha, the first in-depth study of Birger Kaipiainen’s art.