The Saastamoinen Foundation Art Collection is based on the private collection of a Kuopio-based industrialist family. The Saastamoinen Foundation was set up in 1968 by Liisa and Osmo P. Karttunen as a general cultural foundation, one of its main functions being to develop and display the art collection. From 1980 to 1999, the collection was housed at Kuopio Art Museum, from where it was moved to Espoo.
The core of the Saastamoinen Foundation Art Collection is its cross-section of Finnish 20th century art. Expressionism, starting from the November Group, is widely covered including major series of works from Tyko Sallinen, Marcus Collin and Anton Lindfors. A more recent line of expressionism is represented by Åke Mattas, Unto Koistinen, Aimo Kanerva and Rafael Wardi.
Rafael Wardi: Omenoita, 1972, öljymaalaus kankaalle
Tuomas von Boehm: Asetelma, 1948, öljymaalaus kankaalle
The collection also includes works from seminal 1950s artists, such as Tuomas von Boehm, Erik Granfelt, Anitra Lucander and Tapani Raittila. The March Group artists, who were prolific in the 1960s, include sculptors Laila Pullinen, Mauno Hartman and Kain Tapper, and painters Reino Hietanen, Kimmo Kaivanto, Ahti Lavonen and Ulla Rantanen.
The latest section of the collection expands into series of hundreds of works which in addition to traditional forms of art also include photography and video art, light and sound works, conceptual art, object collages and installations from leading Finnish artists.
The collection expanded into international, mainly European art in 1988, and more systematically from 1997 onwards with the aim of collating a unique, world-class collection of international art.
Mimmo Paladino: Bronze Head, 1998, pronssi