Outdoor sign of EAA Gallery Space

Opening of the EAA gallery space in Tallinn 0

This autumn Estonian Academy of Arts is opening a new gallery space in the courtyard of Tallinn Art Hall in collaboration with the Estonian Artists’ Association.

Gallerist Merilin Talumaa sketches out the development of the new gallery space:  In 1995, a gallery space for the Estonian Academy of Arts was established in the main building at Tartu mnt 1, consisting of a space in the building’s lobby.  In 2008, the Art Academy gallery exhibitions started to be organised under the auspices of the EKA G, and in 2013, the gallery moved to the foyer of the university building at Estonia pst 7. From the mid-90s till today, the EAA Gallery was situated at the Academy’s main buildings and served as a foyer-gallery.

Since there have always been long and intensive discussions about whether or not the Academy should have a proper gallery space, a decision by the fine arts department of the Academy was made to find a suitable space for student exhibitions. In the autumn of 2014, the Estonian Academy of Arts opened a new gallery space at Freedom Square (Vabaduse väljak 6/8), in cooperation with the Estonian Artists’ Association. This is actually the first time that the Academy has had a separate space for a gallery located outside of the Academy’s main buildings.

Batman by an unknown artist on the rooftop of Tallinn Art Hall

We also asked to Ms. Talumaa about the spatial layout of the new EAA gallery: The EAA gallery space is located in the courtyard of the Tallinn Art Hall, which belongs to the Estonian Artists’ Association. The location is excellent as it gives a breath of fresh air to the more established galleries located in the same building (City Gallery, Tallinn Art Hall Gallery, Freedom Gallery), as well as to Tallinn Art Hall. Its location in the courtyard also broadens the playground outside of the gallery space itself, and allows for the possibility of making interventions inside the courtyard, and hopefully, also inside the whole building itself. Many artists’ studios, and even apartments, are located in this building. It is also home to the Center of Contemporary Arts of Estonia. There is a great playground and institutional network which will, hopefully, become an intriguing and fertile environment for young artists.

Johanna Jõekalda, Horizon, 2014. Photo: Tõnis Saadoja

Ms. Talumma explains also the curatorial praxis, which is planned for the EAA gallery and briefly outlines the gallery’s future programme: The majority of the exhibitions that are organised annually are comprised of student and departmental expositions. The gallery functions primarily as a springboard for art students, for whom this is a good opportunity to both develop a relationship with a gallery space and to exhibit their works to a broader public.

The term- and graduate projects, the joint- and solo exhibitions, and the students’
 experimental projects exhibited at the EAA gallery should provide an excellent survey of
the programmes taught at the Academy, as well as indicate the institution's high level of teaching and thought processes. The Gallery’s programme is put together twice a year, and on an open-call basis. In addition to the open-call projects, there will be invited curatorial exhibitions and collaborations with the EAA Gallery.

The spring semester’s programme has not yet been announced, but I would like to highlight the gallery’s first two exhibitions, the first of which was titled open(ed) borders. The second exhibition, which will open on the 10th of December, will be a solo exhibition by Fideelia-Signe Roots, who is acquiring her PhD at the Academy. This solo exhibition is part of her PhD studies, in which she focuses on feminist approaches by studying the female as a hero.

Opening exhibition “open(ed) borders”
November 9 – December 6, 2014

The opening exhibition open(ed) borders of the EAA gallery collocates the works of nine young artists who are studying in the academy, or have recently graduated, and have made their studies for some time abroad. The exhibition raises questions regarding boundaries as angular and disrupted phenomena, visualizing the notion that brutal generalizations are inadequate when studying individual cases.

Pille-Riin Jaik. Conquest, 2014

The participating artists explore social boundaries, the construction and deconstruction of such boundaries, relational interactions in the border of space and body, and with the paradoxes of borders. By making their personal interventions more apparent the artists demonstrate that boundaries are not everlasting, but rather created and removed.

Participating artists: Alina Orav, Henri Hütt, Johanna Jõekalda, Kati Saarits, Kristel Saan, Kristina Õllek, Pille-Riin Jaik, Sten Saarits, Uku Sepsivart

Exhibition organised by Eda Tuulberg, Merilin Talumaa and Tiiu Parbus

EAA gallery space
Vabaduse väljak 6/8, Tallinn