Arne Maasik Kahn catalogu, Estoniae

Estonia

Thanks to its position, between East and West, Estonia has been a battleground fought over by Denmark, Germany, Russia, Sweden and Poland.

In 1906, when Estonia was under Russian rule, the family of Louis Kahn moved to the US. Kahn was five years old. He went on to become one of the greatest architects of the 20th century.

Though Kahn was a child when he left Estonia, art historian, Heie Treier, ably supported by the photography of Arne Maasik, makes a compelling argument for his being inspired by the gothic castle of his childhood, 14th-century Kuressaare Castle.

Her exhibition, ‘Kahn: The Islander’ was held on 11 March–17 April 2016 at Kuressaare Castle. Read my article based on her findings: Louis Kahn, one of the greatest architects of the 20th century (published in Design Exchange, June 2016).

In 1920, following World War I, Estonia gained independence from Russia, but during World War II, following the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, it was again occupied and annexed by the Soviet Union, then by the Third Reich, then again by the Soviet Union in 1944. Estonia finally gained independence again 1991.

Kahn: The Islander’ Exhibition will be held at Kurassaare Castle, Estonia again, between  14 July–14 August 2016

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