NOBA Nordic Baltic contemporary art platform

Malle Leis

Malle Leis

Artist's country of origin: Estonia

Malle Leis (1940-2017), a legendary oil-painter and graphic artist, has charmed generations of art lovers with her highly distinctive, strikingly vivid works.
Leis acquired artistic education at Tartu School of Art (1958-1961) and ERKI (1961-1967); she was a member of the well-known artist grouping ANK 64. Leis became a master of classical styles, such as still life, landscape, figurative composition and portrait, she has also made a strong contribution to the development of serigraphy as a printmaker.
A substantial part of Malle Leis´s ouvre consists of oil and water colour paintings, characterised by fragementary structure and bright colours. The objects depicted are sharply exact, yet highly plastic. As said about the artist in introduction to a recent exhibition at the Tartu Art Museum, her works are “as colorful and corky as a warm summer day. Her world of depiction is filled with different plants, vegetables, rainbows, horses, but also with those closest to her and important landscapes. …and of course flowers. Lots and lots of flowers.”
Works in collections:
Malle Leis has attracted wide interest all over the world. In addition to numerous private collections, her works can be found in 14 different museums in her home country and elsewhere. Among foreign museums, the largest collection is held by Zimmerl muuseum in the USA and Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow, Russia. Her works are also represented in e.g. the Museum of Modern Art in New York and Greek National Museum; and naturally in the Art Museum of Estonia and Tartu Art Museum.

Sources: Estonian Artists’ Association, Tartu Art Museum


Tondo from the series "Flowers". The first two layers of the composition (pink version) by Malle Leis
Tondo from the series "Flowers". The first two layers of the composition (pink version)  
52 x 52 cm
23. February by Malle Leis
23. February  
76 x 28 cm
Oranges by Malle Leis
38 x 56 cm
Orange by Malle Leis
28 x 38 cm
Spring Potatoes  by Malle Leis
Spring Potatoes  
38 x 54.5 cm


Variatsioonid sinises  by Malle Leis
Variatsioonid sinises  
45 x 150 cm
Amongst the Spruces I by Malle Leis
Amongst the Spruces I  
90 x 140 cm
Autumn Orange by Malle Leis
Autumn Orange  
55 x 55 cm

Related exhibitions (current and upcoming) View past exhibitions

Runneli katusealune kunstikogu

13.06.2024 - 27.07.2024

HAKI galerii

Kastani 42, Tartu, Estonia

Opening hours: Tue-Fri 12:00 - 18:00 Sat 12:00 - 16:00

Surrealism 100. Prague, Tartu and other stories…

04.04.2024 - 08.09.2024

ERM gallery

Muuseumi tee 2, Tartu, Estonia

Opening hours: Wed-Sun 10:00 - 18:00

Permanent exhibition of the Viinistu Art Museum

13.08.2021 - 20.08.2025

Opening hours: Tue 11:00 - 18:00 Thu-Sun 11:00 - 18:00