Picturesque bus business

During the conference we also exhibited some paintings that are related with the bus industry.

Ilmar KruusamäeIlmar Kruusamäe, artist from Tartu, painted the oil painting titled Ülikooli tänav (Ülikooli Street) in 1982. The painting depicts reflection of Tartu on a front glass of a bus. Kruusamäe, who is considered a master and sometimes also the founder of Estonian hyperrealism, has pictured the details of the bus and Ülikooli Street with amazing precision. The painting presents Ikarus with number 977. At the time the picture was made, in the summer of 1981, this was the means of transport to Budapest for Estonian Student Building Brigade. The front glass shows the buildings facing the University main building. The painting is based on a photo. "Yes, I did use a photo. I took the picture myself, with Smena. But at the time I did not know anything about photo or hyperrealism" (Sirp, 2003). It does not matter whether the artist knew he was using the hyperrealistic style or not, everyone who cares for preserving and keeping bus history should be happy that this kind of painting exists. A detailed and expressive painting that centres on a bus and the view from bus window looks simply unbelievable.

Oskar RaunamWatercolour from 1952 measures only 15 x 21 cm; author is Oskar Raunam (1914–1992), a known artist and long-time lecturer at the Art Institute. He had realistic style and his paintings are from different genres. His work won the grand prix for murals of the Baltic pavilions at the Paris World Exhibition in 1937. For bus history enthusiasts the most important work is Viru väljak Tallinnas (Viru Square in Tallinn) that depicts post-war Tallinn bus station. The first bus station was established in 1922, when both city and county buses departed from Vene market, that people also referred to as Täiturg (Flea market) and later Viru väljak (Viru Square). In 1940, the buses still departed from the same place but by that time the square was named after Stalin. Only in 1959 the bus station was mover to its current location. Thus, the bus station on Viru Square pictured on the watercolour is also important from a historical point of view. The buses on the picture are probably ZIS 155-s. At that time these buses were widely used both on city and near-city lines. The Soviet Union's Factory Named for Stalin used equipment from lorries in bus production; the straight-six engine with side-valves used petrol. This became also the Achilles heel for that type of bus.

Nigul EspeAuthor of another work depicting buses is Nigul Espe (1907–1970), an artist active in Tartu art society Pallas. His oil painting Tartu vaade (View of Tartu) depicts the bus departure site at that time. There is no station building in the picture although the one-storey station with waiting hall and cafeteria already existed at that time. Construction works pictured in the painting are probably not connected with bus industry because the modern station building, demolished couple of years ago, was built only in 1970s. However, the picture does show the buses in a very colourful and fun manner. The buses are probably Ikarus 55, LAZ 695 and the one on the right might be KAVZ. The most special of them, at least for Estonians, is the TA 6, produced in 1957–1961 by Estonian SSR's Ministry of Road's Tartu Automobile Factory. This was an inter-city bus with wooden frame and rigid chassis; it had 25 passenger seats and places for the driver and conductor.

Martin Saar From contemporary times we can mention a work titled Bussijaamas enne ärasõitu (2009) (At the bus station before departure) by Martin Saar. This is a massive oil painting depicting a typical 1980s county line bus Ikarus. The artist, who was born on the year of Moscow Olympic Games (1980), is often inspired by that decade. He has said that enough time has passed from the 80s to look back on the items, situations and occurrences with a smile and even a little nostalgia. But the bus on the picture is most likely Ikarus 255, considering that the artist has realistically depicted the bus, all other Ikarus models can be left out. For example, Ikarus 250 used on long distance lines had a fridge and wardrobe in the back that blocked the view through the back window. These cannot be seen on the painting. At the same time the four headlights on the painting suggest that the bus is probably manufactured during 1979–1980 because before that buses usually had two headlights. Latter models (Ikarus 256) had plastic bumpers and doors slid to the sides when opened.

Ado VabbeAdo Vabbe (1892–1961) – avant-gardist, graphic artist and lecturer, founder of Pallas and member of Estonian Artists' Association – painted Punane vagun (The Red Wagon) some time in the late 1940s or early 1950s. The artist’s manner speaks for post-war years. Inspiration to paint the train wagon might have resulted from the Tartu Art Institute's professors' and students' trip to Leningrad in the end of 1940s.

1968. aastal Ukrainas sündinud kunstniku Dmitri Dobrovolski poolt 2011 aastal maalitud Ungaris toodetud ja Eestis ringisõitnud Ikarus Dmitri DobrovolskiDmitri Dobrovolski is an artist born in 1968 in Ukraine. In 2011 he painted a work titled Ikarus Hugo, which depicts the completely restored Ikarus Lux from 1972 in front of Catherine's church in Võru. The bus once travelled around Estonia and now belongs to Mootor Grupp. Dobrovolski is the creator of unique technique and personal style. He uses oil colours on coloured backgrounds. The artist has developed a contrast colour technique by creating picturesque mosaics that allow producing thousands of tones and colour combinations. His works express colour as a feeling. Dobrovolski is born from colour and it is impossible to change that. "The sole purpose of painting for me is colour. Only aim is colour that brings out positive emotions, raises spirits and makes people believe that life is beautiful..."Karl Hefftler

Watercolour artist Karl Hefftler (1853–1918) from Tallinn majored in architecture in Saint Petersburg Arts Academy. His works were exhibited at the exhibition of Russian Aquarelia Society, a member of which he himself was from 1898. His watercolour painting Raudteejaamas (At the train station) is painted in the last decade of 19th century and the masterpiece is especially interesting for its motif.

Henn RoodeIntellectual and truth seeker Henn Roode (1924–1974) revolved around higher categories of art philosophy – the truth and absolute. Oil painting Tartu maantee (Tartu maantee Street)(1963) pictures the view on Tartu maantee Street towards St Olaf's church. The painting is made during the artist's expressive pre-analytical period after graduating from State Art Institute of ESSR in 1959. As was common among younger artists at the time, Roode too was influenced by heavier themes. In his city views he tried not to paint the pretty and ceremonial downtown, but instead the abandoned slums and allies. What is special about this painting is that on the left side of it, we see modern Tallinn bus station as a part of contemporary city space. Several works by Henn Roode are part of KUMU's permanent exhibition.Karl Burman juunior

Karl Burman jr (1914–2001) is one of the best-known watercolour artists in Estonia but he has done some oil paintings as well. He is an honorary member of Estonian Watercolour Society. His landscapes and detailed city views of mostly Tallinn and Narva have found a new home in many private collections home and abroad. Works from the prime (from 1940 to 1950) are exhibited in various Estonian museums. Oil painting Sild Pirital (Bridge at Pirita) is also from this era. The view of Pirita harmonises with the red bus and summer brightness, giving strong vibes from the era.

Building contractor Peeter Tanska (1893–1971) studied at the Omsk State Technical University and at Tallinn railway school. In 1932 he graduatedPeeter Tanska from Tallinna Tehnikum (predecessor of Tallinn University of Technology) where he had majored in construction technology. The graduation project was titled Raudsild üle Vigala II jõe (Iron bridge across Vigala II river), which was sketched in watercolour. Professor Ottomar Madisson, a specialist in monolith reinforced concrete, supervised the project. In 1920, Tanska moved to Nõmme district in Tallinn. In addition to the Rahumäe overbridge, the new Nõmme station building was also constructed under his lead in 1930.