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Exhibition "Michel Sittow. Estonian Painter at the Courts of Renaissance Europe"

In 2018, the Art Museum of Estonia, in collaboration with the National Gallery of Art in Washington DC, is organising a large-scale exhibition on Michel Sittow (ca 1469–1525).

Michel Sittow is a painter from Estonia who became a sought-after and highly renowned artist in the royal courts of Europe at the turn of the 15th and 16th centuries.

The acclaimed master had been forgotten for centuries when documents found in the Tallinn city archives identified this historical individual a few decades ago. Now, nearly 500 years after his death, his first solo exhibition is being organised.

Today, experts on Netherlandish art highly value Michel Sittow’s paintings, which are exquisitely executed. His oeuvre, which covers a period of about twenty years, is scattered among famous museums around the world: the Louvre, the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna, the Gemäldegalerie in Berlin, the National Galleries in London and Washington DC, etc. Several of the master’s paintings have been included in large exhibitions, but until now a solo exhibition of Michel Sittow’s works has never been organised.

The international exhibition project, which includes multi-faceted collaboration with centres in Europe and the United States, brings Sittow’s extraordinary works from distinguished museums and private collection to his first solo exhibition. This is a unique platform for a broader introduction and further research on the oeuvre of this remarkable artist. Most of Sittow’s small number of works (20 to 25 paintings) are on exhibit, thereby providing an excellent survey of his work as a portraitist and painter of religious works. It also allows us to view his art in a broader context, including in collaboration with Juan de Flandes and other contemporary Netherlandish artists. In addition to the paintings, another section of the exhibition is comprised of a timeline that provides an overview of the 500-year story of Michel Sittow, from his birth and successful career to his fall into oblivion and rediscovery.

The exhibition, which is a collaborative project of the Art Museum of Estonia and the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC, will take place in 2018 in celebration of the centenary of the Republic of Estonia. This year also marks 500 years since Michel Sittow’s final return to his home-town of Tallinn.

On 14 and 15 September 2018 during the last week of the exhibition, an international symposium called "The Stories of Michel Sittow’s Life and Art: Facts and Fiction" will take place in the Kumu auditorium. The best-known Michel Sittow experts will appear at the symposium and discuss the future of Sittow research based on the known information and existing gaps, and thereby place his art into a broader context.

More information, the schedule and registration available here: https://kumu.ekm.ee/en/syndmus/symposium-stories-of-michel-sittows-life-and-art-facts-and-fables/

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