- About Ateneum
Spanning over 60 years, Rafael Wardi has an exceptionally long career, and he is still active today. Wardi is known for his colourful paintings, the motifs of which range from still lifes and portraits to city views and landscapes. The majority of his artworks were oil paintings until the end of the 1990s, but towards the end of the decade he started using pastels. He has also produced watercolours, drawings and graphics. The portrait he made of the Finnish president Tarja Halonen in 2002 received a lot of attention, and made him known among the general public, if he wasn't that before.
Wardi's work is not restricted to visual arts, however; he has also designed opera sets and costumes and participated in dance productions. He has also worked as a teacher in the School of the Fine Arts Academy (now the Finnish Academy of Fine Arts, a part of the University of the Arts Helsinki) and as an art therapist in the Nikkilä mental hospital.
The aim of this exhibition is to give an overview of the different phases of Wardi's career, highlighting his versatility and ability to transform. Ateneum will present around 90 works covering all periods of his oeuvre.