Monday, August 11, 2014

Konrad Magi

Meditation (landscape with a lady)
oil on canvas
81.6 x 97 cm
Eesti Kunstimuuseum, Tallinn, Estonia

Konrad Magi (1878-1925) is often considered to be the most important colour-sensitive painter in the history of Estonian art. His works on motives of the island of Saaremaa are the first modern Estonian nature paintings. Regardless of the fact that his creative career lasted only 20 years, he had a significant impact on the art scene of his time and on subsequent developments.

He was born in Southern Estonia and studied in St. Petersburg but his education there was at a school that taught technical drawing. At the same time, he was keenly engaged in theater, violin, and various sports. He left school without graduating and at 27 years old, he started painting more seriously. He continued painting on his trips to Paris, Normandy and Norway. He worked in Estonia from the summer of 1913 onward and also founded the Pallas Art School there, which turned into the training ground for dozens of artists. His premature death ended his intensive, productive and varied career as an artist.