Estonian artist Kaido Ole to open an exhibit in Russia

Estonian artist Kaido Ole is to open an exhibit in Moscow, Russia, that will feature his paintings from the 2011-2017 time period.

The exhibition will take place from 6-24 September at the Triumph Gallery that focuses on contemporary art and works with major Russian and international artists.

The 54-year-old Ole lives and works in Tallinn, Estonia. His work has been shown both in the country and internationally since 1989. He is a graduate of the Estonian Academy of the Arts, where he studied design and painting.

Following the earliest, more formalist experiments with painting, there appeared to be a significant shift in 1996, when Ole directly addressed his blood relation to a prominent Estonian artist Eduard Ole (20 May 1898 – 24 November 1995) in his work table.

Almost immediately after what Kaido Ole saw as a turn inwards – “an exhibition of personal games” – his work turned into a more social satire expressed through paintings of invented characters, the kind of ball-headed men that are familiar to followers of the artist’s work.

Yet he never abandoned the realisation of himself as a participant in a wider historical setting; instead, it soon reappeared in a more direct way, when starting from the early 2000s the artist started to include himself in his paintings – first just the hands and later in full height. This emergence of the artist himself in the painting not only defined Ole as a participant of the social scenarios that he invented, but also reversed what he had thought to be merely “private games”.

Ole has participated in various group shows in Estonia as well as in Europe, America, Scandinavia and Russia. He represented Estonia at the 2003 Venice Biennial together with Marko Mäetamm. His works are in several public collections, he was recently (2014) included in Thames & Hudson mega-book “100 Painters of Tomorrow” being selected out of over 4,000 portfolios.


Cover: Kaido Ole – Still Life with a Rainbow (2011.) Images courtesy of Kaido Ole.

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