Kouvola Art Museum opened on 1 August 1987 when the second part of Kouvolatalo (Kouvola-house cultural centre) was completed. The Art Museum focuses on modern and contemporary Finnish art.
The Poikilo Museums in Kouvolatalo include Kouvola Art Museum and City Museum, Kouta Gallery and Poikilo Gallery.
The Art Museum focuses on modern and contemporary Finnish art. The City Museum shows exhibitions related to the history of Kouvola.
The exhibitions of the City Museum showcase the history of Kouvola.
The Kouvola City Museum, based in the Kouvola House, was opened to the public in November 2015. A media installation created by the internationally acclaimed artist Charles Sandison, who is based in Finland, has been installed in the staircase of the City Museum. The light installation is called Joki (The River) and is made up of local historical documents, pictures and words relating to river Kymi, which flow to greet the visitors.
Kouvola Art Museum Poikilo is the only art museum in the Kymenlaakso region. The museum was opened in 1987. The museum’s exhibition spaces are located in the Kouvola House, which also houses the office of the Poikilo museums as well as the picture archives and customer service.
The museum of art shows changing exhibitions.
In the exhibition inspired by Finland’s centenary, Myth busters and travellers, we consider traditional concepts of our people's origins, unity and thirst for culture, which are deeply rooted in Finnish thought.
These three myths are probed using texts, images and objects relating to the modern history of Kouvola.
The Finnish pavilion at the World Exhibition in Paris in 1900 is presented in the exhibition as raising national consciousness, but also as a bridge to Europe and a link to the other theme of the exhibition, travellers. You can ‘visit’ a 3D model of the pavilion developed by Aalto University's Media Lab.
The travellers section describes the internationalism and migration of people and families who moved to and away from the Kouvola region by telling their life stories. Th exhibition follows the now well-known Fabergé workmaster Alma Pihl (1888–1976) and inventor from Elimäki, Eric Tigerstedt (1887–1925). People left the Kouvola region to search for a better livelihood across the ocean. American immigrants’ stories show their fates were very different. Tales of Karelian evacuees also come up in the travellers section.
Poikilo Kouvola Art Museum is transformed into an arena for a textile art exhibition in February 2019. ON THE SKIN generates an encounter between the textile artworks of a mother and daughter, Aino and Aura Kajaniemi. Two video works by Riitta Järvelä will also be on show at the exhibition.
ON THE SKIN reflects the close relationship between the mother and daughter on the personal, aesthetic and artistic level. The dialogue between different generations of artists creates a temporal tension. The artists’ works combine sensitivity, seriality and narrative with appreciation for slow work by hand. The human figure in its various forms appears in both artists’ work, alongside the ornamentality associated with the textile tradition. Both artists are also moving more and more from visual narrative to installations. As the scale of their art increases, the forms become more sculptural; the narrative moves from two to three dimensions.
Two video works by Riitta Järvelä, Red Balloon and Be Seen, are being displayed in conjunction with the ON THE SKIN exhibition. These video works straddle the middle ground between expressive documentary and the visual arts. The artist collects old album pictures and postcards from around the world. The images she finds are both historical and documentary. She uses them as a base material and continues shaping the work by recording and describing the static and moving images.
Red Balloon tells the history of Finnish childhood from the late 1800s to the 1970s, using the album photos. It also draws on Järvelä’s own life experience. Be Seen arose from her observation of the endangered nature of play at this time in our digital lives. The video is about play European culture. I played with the video itself when making it, said Järvelä.
Exhibition open Tue-Fri 11 am to 6 pm, Sat-Sun 12 noon to 5 pm, Mon closed