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Raimo Utriainen: The Curtain (Memorial to actress Ida Aalberg), 1972. You may not use this photo for commercial purposes. © Photo: Helsinki Art Museum

The Curtain / Memorial to actress Ida Aalberg

Artist Raimo Utriainen

Kaisaniemenpuisto, Kansallisteatterin pienen näyttämön edusta, Kluuvi, Helsinki

The Curtain marks a turning point in Finnish memorial sculpture – with Eila Hiltunen’s Sibelius Monument it is one of the first abstract memorials of a person to be actually realized. Raimo Utriainen’s (1927-1994) entry won the general competition for the memorial in 1961 and the following invitational in 1962. The 9-metre high bronze memorial, set on a red granite pedestal, was unveiled in 1972.

Ida Aalberg (1857-1915) was a famed star of the Suomalainen teatteri theatre and was considered the best actress in the Nordic countries in her time. Visually, Utriainen’s work is based on the heavy, yet dynamic movement of a theatre curtain. It derives its power from the interplay of light, space and form.

The work of art belongs to the collection of HAM Helsinki Art Museum.

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