Transparency. Watercolours. Kjell Ekström. Åland

June 13th – August 10th, 2008


Kjell Ekström (b.1961), an artist from Åland Islands, has delved into the rich opportunities of aquarelle techniques for over 20 years. He has derived his inspiration from the Åland Islands, as well as from longer painting trips to various parts of the world – Japan, Mexico, Africa, India, Vietnam, Bali, Cuba, the Mediterranean, Brasil, New Zealand, Faroe Islands and many other places – that he annually took with a small circle of watercolourist friends. On his aquarelles, the artist interprets motifs and spirits of nature, as well as the expressivity of the human body. The artist is fascinated by the freshness of the North, the bare spaces of waters, and the endless variations of light and silence. Likewise, he rapturously dives into the colourful experiences of exotic cultures, blazing heat and tropical exuberance.


The sensitively nuanced works of Kjell Ekström charm the audience with their minimalistic culture of form and skilful use of etherealness and translucency of aquarelle techniques.


He often paints extremely thin layers on top of each other and deliciously uses the characteristics of various colour pigments. It is peculiar to the artist to abstract motifs, sensitively capturing diverse moods with a bare maulstick and an exquisite quiver of shade nuances.


Kjell Ekström has performed at numerous exhibitions all over the world and his works are being displayed in several museums. He has also designed fretworks and postmarks in Åland Islands.

At the exposition Translucent, a selection of the artist’s aquarelles from the years 2000-2008 are being exhibited.


In addition to creative work, Kjell Ekström has established and is managing one of the North’s most renowned museum at Önningeby, Åland Islands, dedicated to the Önningeby colony of artists that operated at the turn of the 19th – 20th century. As a cooperation of the Önningeby Museum, the Museum of Adamson-Eric and the Tuglas Literature Centre, the exhibition The Fenomenon of Åland Islands was presented in Tallinn and Åland Islands in 2006, contemplating on the creative trips of our Noor-Eesti to Åland Islands in the fashion of the Önningeby colony of artists.


For years, Kjell Ekström has been a member of the board of the Northern Watercolourist Union and organised courses of watercolouring in Scandinavia and other European countries.


Kjell Ekström
Kersti Koll (Art Museum of Estonia – Adamson-Eric Museum)

The exhibition Translucent will be open until August 10th.