Hugo Lepik (1905 – 2001)

Lepik, Hugo (1905 - 2001). Camomiles. (1950s)

Born on November 9, 1905 in Jõhvi, he received general education there in 1914-1916, then Erra-Liiva elementary school, Jõhvi gymnasium (1920-1923).
The painter and graphic artist Hugo Lepic successfully graduated from the State College of Arts and Crafts in 1929 with a degree in graphics and lithography. He was also a student of G. Reindorf. In 1929, with the support of G. Reindorf, he began working as a drawing teacher at the State School of Industrial Art and as the head of a workshop for lithography and zincography (the latter he founded himself in 1932). In 1937 he went on an internship to Italy, in 1938 to Finland, then to Canada. In 1935, H. Lepik completed his studies at the Higher School of Graphics in Berlin as a scholarship holder of the Ministry of Education. From 1929, Hugo Lepik worked intensively in the field of book graphics and contributed to magazines (for example, cover design and drawings for the magazine Sõdur (1929 and 1933) and cover design for the magazines Kaitse Kodu! (1929) and Taluperenaine (1939)). He drew beautiful vignettes for the magazine “Waramu” (1938), which were repeated from issue to issue.
Hugo Lepic’s style is a correct and graphically complex drawing. The vignettes mainly depict nature motifs. The title picture of the 2nd issue of the magazine Eesti Noorus for 1938 consists of a regular antique font and an ethnographic floral ornament, designed in a manner characteristic of the era and the school.
However, in addition to graphics, he was drawn to painting, in which he is characterized by realism, at the same time a style with a certain clear sensitivity. As such, it is characteristic of the school of painting that developed in the School of Art and Industry.
Hugo Lepik’s work is dominated by realistic landscapes, mostly colorful views of the coasts of Estonia, Sweden and Norway. In addition, still lifes, portraits and everyday and book graphics. Relatively little is known about the work of the real painter and graphic artist H. Lepik, although he occupied a certain place both in pre-war and foreign Estonian art.
In 1944 the artist fled to Sweden, where he settled in Gothenburg.