• et
  • en
info@salm.ee Kooli 5, 90502 Haapsalu Reg. nr. 90012432

Exhibition of the best entries of the Ilon Wikland Young Artist Award

5.02.2020 – 1.03.2020

In Ilon´s Wonderland.

Entrance with the museum ticket.


In a way, Ilon Wikland is present in all the homes where the shelves are lined with books of her illustrations. There are also homes where the artist’s original pictures hang on the walls. These are the pictures we wished to display publicly for Ilon Wikland’s 90th birthday. This exhibition includes 34 drawings and one potato child mini sculpture received from a dozen homes across Estonia.

But how did these pictures reach their present owners? Not by way of purchase, as one would presume. Ilon has been a generous gift-giver. In 2009, when Ilon’s Wonderland theme centre was completed, the artist kindly let each museum worker choose a picture to commemorate the event. One time the husband of Ilon’s guest had fixed a plumbing problem at her house. He also received a picture by way of thanks. A picture was given to the director of the short film “Ilon” (1993). Many co-operation partners and friends were shown gratitude with a picture as a gift. The potato child mini sculpture was initially meant as the prototype of a marzipan treat offered at the theme centre.

The exhibition displays pictures from different time periods, some of them illustrations, some the artist’s creative work of choice. There are three rare original illustrations of the first edition of “Väikevend ja Karlsson katuselt“ published in 1955 (Estonian publication in 1964). The Karlsson pictures in Ilon’s Wonderland collection are from the later parts of the series „Karlsson katuselt lendab jälle“ (1962, Estonian publication in 1970) and „Karlsson katuselt hiilib jälle“ (1968, Estonian publication in 1970). Our collection does not include any original illustrations of “Potato Children” either (2007, Estonian publication in 2008), however, now we can proudly show them to the public thanks to the generous people who are willing to share their private collection with all of us. The pictures of this book are especially meaningful to Ilon’s Wonderland, since this very house was depicted as the initial home of the potato children.