“Call To The Wild” at Aalto’s Maison Louis Carré
Within Louis Carré’s iconic house built by Finnish architect Alvar Aalto in the late 1950s, visitors can now experience the fine artworks of three contemporary Finnish artists: Laura Laine, Kustaa Saksi and Kim Simonsson.
Built in the late 1960s on the edge of the Rambouillet forest, 40 km from Paris, Maison Louis Carré is a masterpiece in and of itself. First built as the home of French art dealer and collector Louis Carré and his wife Olga, the house is now listed as a Historical Monument, Heritage of the 20th Century in France, and the only house built by Finish architect Alvar Aalto in France — one of the masters of 20th-century architecture.
In its woodland setting, the now exhibition space invites its visitors on a journey to the far North with an exhibition that celebrates its monument’s 60th anniversary and highlights the Finnish esotericism that inspired both its architect and the artists on view. Resembling the year that it was built, ‘Call to The Wild’ (or ‘L’Appel de la Nature’ in French) is the fruit of a unique alliance between Finnish and French culture, and its curatorial process reflects that. Co-curated by Lise Coirier (Co-Founder of Spazio Nobile Gallery in Brussels) and Kati Laakso (Director of the Finnish Cultural Institute for the Benelux), in close collaboration with Ásdís Ólafsdóttir (Director of Maison Louis Carré), Roger Nilsson and Alain Chiglien (Co-Founders of Galerie NeC Nilsson et Chiglien Paris) — ‘Call to the Wild’ presents a refined combination of works made by three artists who, each in their own right, are reinvigorating the Finnish art scene. The selected artists are: glass artist Laura Laine, textile artist Kustaa Saksi, and sculptor Kim Simonsson.
The now-iconic house is defined by the presence of natural light and its made-to-measure interior design created by Alvar and Elissa Aalto and their collaborators in the late 1950s. In turn, the exhibition juxtaposes the artworks of these Finnish artists with its intimate surroundings, as they become part of its interior and enter into a dialogue with the different rooms. Although each of the artists work with distinctly different materials, they are all heavily inspired by the poems that are found in the Kalevala: the national epic of Karelia and Finland, and one of the most significant works of Finnish literature. The echoes of the mythology and folklore found in these poems find their home within the practices of these three artists, as well as in the walls of the 20th-century monument — and so it is no surprise that the three-dimensional qualities of the artist’s materials perfectly fit with the characteristically organic, functionalist atmosphere of Aalto’s making. By inviting these artists to exhibit in this space, the exhibition not only provides an encounter between the house and the selection of works, but, longer importantly, starts a dialogue between two generations of Finnish design: combining the legacy of Aalto with that of the contemporary artists who explore different styles, materials, and techniques.
The exhibition “Call To The Wild /L’Appel de la Nature” will be on view until November 29th, 2020 at Maison Louis Carré. Sunday Brunch and Opening on 27 September. Due to COVID19 regulations, it is required to book your visit. You can make a reservation here. If you want to learn more about the exhibition, you can check out the exhibition catalogue as well as the visitor’s guide – with even more information under our events page.
The exhibition is the fruit of the collaboration between the Maison Louis Carré and the Finnish Cultural Institute to the Benelux, in close collaboration with Spazio Nobile and Galerie NeC Nilsson et Chiglien Paris, and made possible with the support of the Embassy of Finland in Paris.
Cover Image: Maison Louis Carré © Frederik Vercruysse, courtesy of The Finnish Cultural Institute For The Benelux