The exhibition Houses of Tove Jansson presents a wide selection of works from the artist’s more than 70-year-long career and will also feature exclusive capsule collections inspired by Jansson available exclusively on-site.
Opening on September 29, Houses of Tove Jansson is the largest exhibition in central Europe and France to explore Tove Jansson’s vast life and career, presenting her work in a unique contemporary setting.
Jansson was an ambitious and uncompromising artist who wanted to be able to support herself financially through her art. She started licensing the Moomins in the 1950s, ensuring that her artistic vision was reflected also in commercial settings.
Exhibition accompanied by unique capsule collections
Ahead of the opening of the exhibition Houses of Tove Jansson in Paris, the curators are unveiling unique capsule collections, which will only be sold on location at the exhibition.
The capsule collections feature a diverse mix of apparel, jewellery and houseware by an international group of designers and artisans.
Moomin Characters has collaborated with D’heygere, Vitelli, Ana Kraš x CC Tapis and Sabine Marcelis to create one-of-a-kind items inspired by Jansson’s life and work.
The collection comprises nine products, ranging in price from 330€ to 7000€, available in limited quantities sold exclusively at the exhibition.
Each piece in these collections draws inspiration from various aspects of Jansson’s life and creative journey. The designers have been inspired by her expressive use of colour, the duality of youth and adulthood as depicted in her writings, the inspirational tales of the Moomins and the isolation and repose felt on her beloved summer cottage on the island Klovharun.
The first Moomin stories inspired Vitelli’s knitwear
Founded in 2016 by Mauro Simionato, Vitelli aims at reconnecting Made in Italy and the Italian youth culture through contemporary, non-gendered knitwear designs made with reclaimed yarns on special mechanical machinery.
Vitelli has created a triptych of needle-punched tapestries, alongside regenerated sweaters and overshirts for adults and children, all inspired by the first three Moomin books: The Moomins and the Great Flood (1945), Comet in Moominland (1946) and Finn Family Moomintroll (1948).
Read more about the capsule collection and the designers on the exhibition home page.
D’heygere’s ‘Snorkmaiden’ necklace features handmade paper flowers
Stéphanie D’heygere established her eponymous jewellery label in 2018, quickly garnering industry acclaim for her inventive and thought-provoking pieces. The Paris-based jeweller creates unisex jewellery and accessories with a focus on bold minimalist compositions.
D’heygere’s design of limited-edition necklaces inspired by Snorkmaiden features handmade paper flowers and a removable chain to transform the pendant into a small functional vase.
The necklace for Houses of Tove Jansson is a continuation of the Canister series of jewellery, recognised as a signature design for the brand.
Ana Kraš x CC Tapis rug is inspired by Tove Jansson’s island
Ana Kraš has collaborated with CC Tapis on a handmade wool rug for the capsule, where the designer has been inspired by the natural elements and isolation of Klovharun, Jansson’s summertime island haven.
Born in France, designed in Milan, and produced in Nepal by expert Tibetan artisans, CC Tapis is an Italian company that produces contemporary hand-knotted rugs. Ana Kraš studied furniture design and interior architecture at the University of Applied Arts in Belgrade before moving to New York to pursue various projects in object design, art, photography, and fashion.
The Summer Book inspired Sabine Marcelis’ mirrors
Dutch-Kiwi designer Sabine Marcelis has interpreted the colours from Jansson’s The Summer Book into two bespoke floor-length mirrors with layered colours, inspired by the duality of youth and adulthood in Jansson’s writings.
While her enchanting furnishings may appear effortless due to their fluid and simple forms, they are the result of relentless attention to detail and venturesome experiments with materiality.
A glimpse into Tove Jansson’s library
The collections can be experienced in a unique setting within the exhibition, which doubles as a reading area. Here, the visitors can study books from Jansson’s private library and buy a selection of her literature in addition to the works in the capsule collection.
The space offers an exclusive glimpse into Tove Jansson’s library, with books she read in her atelier in Helsinki, on her island and during her trips. The carefully chosen selection of literature from Jansson’s bookshelf is curated in collaboration with Bokbar, a Nordic bookshop and coffee shop in Paris’ 20th arrondissement.
The selected books played a crucial role in Jansson’s life; some of them are mentioned in her letters to her most beloved friends, lovers and family.
As Bokbar specialises in Nordic literature, the curation mainly highlights Nordic authors from Tove’s library. Most books are written by authors from Finland, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and Iceland.
Moomin in many forms
Starting with the early development of Tove Jansson’s visual language and narrative style, the exhibition brings together key works of Jansson’s career, including a selection of her paintings, drawings, illustrations, and texts.
Moomin fans will be able to explore how Tove Jansson expanded her Moomin stories into different art forms and commercial products, including theatre, comics, and merchandising.
“For someone who grows up in Finland, Tove and the Moomins are inseparable from one’s childhood and education. The process of going back to re-reading Moomin books was really fun – you find and explore different elements, reading the books differently than as a kid or teenager”, say the curators of the exhibition, Sini Rinne-Kanto and Tuukka Laurila from The Community.
“It has been a humbling experience to curate and organise an exhibition of someone you deeply care about and who has produced such a massive and influential artistic output like Tove. We hope the exhibition conveys her life attitude and philosophy in addition to showing all the artworks we considered as key pieces across her career.”
Exhibition hosted in a former print house
The exhibition Houses of Tove Jansson takes place in a former print house in the 11th arrondissement of Paris, where different sections of the house present various chapters in Jansson’s life. Each section, or room, melds elements from her personal life with her artistic output.
Different physical spaces were important to Tove Jansson. When planning the Houses of Tove Jansson exhibition, the curators have been focusing on various spaces, both imagined and tangible.
Sites that have inspired the exhibition include the ever-expanding Moominhouse, the solitary Klovharun island in the Gulf of Finland, Jansson’s beloved city of Paris and her atelier in Helsinki.
Information and tickets
Houses of Tove opens in Paris, France, on September 29 during Paris Fashion Week and extends through Paris+, par Art Basel, to October 29. The exhibition is curated by The Community, a Parisian art institution, in collaboration with Tove Jansson’s estate and Moomin Characters. The exhibition space is at Espace Mont-Louis, 8 Impasse de Mont Louis in the 11th arrondissement of Paris.
Houses of Tove Jansson is be free but requires registration – sign up here.
Read more about other Tove Jansson and Moomin exhibitions around the world here!