The card game in the collections of the Finnish National Museum

High school / University

New collections in ArtCentrica!

After last week’s addition of a selection of works from the Cleveland Museum of Art, we are happy to announce that starting today, you will also be able to explore some of the works from the Finnish National Museum on ArtCentrica.

The museum encompasses all of the country’s culture, housing as much as 170 years of history, with paintings ranging from the 1600s to the early 1900s.

For this collection, too, ArtCentrica users will be able to navigate the works in great detail, thanks to ultra-high-resolution images; compare them with those in other collections; create in-depth lessons for students; annotate details; and more. 


From left to right: The Card Players, Dirck Hals (Finnish National Museum); Card Players, Paul Cézanne (MET)

Between the 16th and 20th centuries, the card game theme was among those most exploited by artists in their artworks. This was because the subject carried with it a long figurative tradition, useful for investigating reality and appealing to morality through the depiction of different characters: the clever and the naive, the good and the bad, and so on. 

This aspect is particularly evident in Dirck Hals’ famous painting, The Card Players.

From the 1600s onward, here then is where the people forcefully entered the art world, taking the place of the sacred, mythological or celebratory themes of previous centuries.

The card game involved artists from all parts of Europe, from west to east. Among those who most devoted themselves to the representation of the theme, one must mention Paul Cézanne, the father of Post-Impressionism, who devoted no less than a dozen studies and no fewer than five oil paintings to it. 

Cézanne’s works paved the way for the formal decomposition of subjects, placing him among the first Cubist experiments. 

Continue exploring the masterpieces of the Finnish National Museum of Art on ArtCentrica!

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