Ellen Thesleff

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Ellen Thesleff
Ellen Thesleff.jpg
Ellen Thesleff in 1945
Born(1869-10-05)October 5, 1869
DiedJanuary 12, 1954(1954-01-12) (aged 84)
EducationFinnish Art Society
Académie Colarossi
MovementSymbolism Expressionism Modernism

Ellen Thesleff (October 5, 1869 – January 12, 1954) was an expressionist Finnish painter,[1] regarded as one of the leading Finnish modernist painters.[2]

Thesleff was born in Helsinki, the eldest daughter of five siblings[3] and her father was an amateur painter. She took private lessons and then, in 1887, studied for two years at the Finnish Art Society Drawing School (now known as the Finnish Academy of Fine Arts) with Gunnar Berndtson. In 1891, Tesleff moved to Paris and enrolled into Académie Colarossi.[1]

Thesleff spent all of her life in Finland, France, and Italy, visiting Italy first in 1894. In Finland, she had a family estate at Murole, Ruovesi. She never married.[2] Thesleff took part in many big exhibitions in the 20th century, in particular, in 1949 her paintings were on display on a big exhibition of Nordic art in Copenhagen and were praised by media.[1]

At the beginning of her career, Thesleff worked on symbolist paintings in the style similar to Eugène Carrière, though she insisted she was most influenced by Édouard Manet. Later, she moved to expressionism and modernism, most notably landscapes.[1][2]

Thesleff was included in the 2018 exhibit Women in Paris 1850-1900.[4]


  1. ^ a b c d "Ellen Thesleff". Ateneum. Archived from the original on 2 April 2015. Retrieved 8 March 2015.
  2. ^ a b c Granbacka, Camilla (5 March 2015). "Ellen Thesleff på Åbo konstmuseum" (in Swedish). Dagens Nyheter. Retrieved 8 March 2015.
  3. ^ "Sven-Harrys konstmuseum :: About the exhibition". www.sven-harrys.se. Archived from the original on 2016-03-12. Retrieved 2017-03-11.
  4. ^ Madeline, Laurence (2017). Women artists in Paris, 1850-1900. Yale University Press. ISBN 978-0300223934.