23.September 2011 - 12.February 2012
She has been called the Frida Kahlo of the North – and her fate both as a human being and an artist resembles a great deal the Mexican artist colleague. During their childhood, they both experienced a tragic accident, which had an impact on the rest of their lives. However, these are the only similarities the two female artists have in common and while one is today a famous blockbuster name, the other has her international breakthrough yet to come.
The Finnish national icon Helene Schjerfbeck (1862-1946) is known for her sensitive landscapes, extremely simplified interiors and figures as well as several experimental and innovative still lifes. But above all, her evocative self-portraits are symbols of her sophisticated art – and renders an indication of her unusual talent.
In spite of her being a national icon in Finland, Helene Schjerfbeck has to a large degree remained unknown to the public abroad. Presenting her as one of the major artists of the Nordic countries, the intention is to introduce her to a Danish audience and to show the essence of her original contribution to modernity.