Category Archives: Exhibitions

Mara Ljutjuk THE UNFORGETTABLE ONES

Mara Ljutjuk

The Unforgettable Ones

March 13 – April 10, 2022

The paintings on this exhibition capture reflections of a woman’s emotions, fragments of her daily life, and her inner musings.

Mara Ljutjuk always held a deep respect for women, especially the ones who’ve played a role in her own life. They have been, for her, a source of inspiration, fascination, and surprises. She is continually amazed by their contradictory nature – a mesmerizing mixture of vitality and sensitivity. She says women are endowed with an incredible capability of being both enchantingly mysterious and determinedly resilient. They make an exciting subject for the artist by virtue of their complex and powerful inner world.

Mara Ljutjuk finds the unique beauty hidden in EVERY woman, and says this beauty blossoms fully when a woman can realize her skills, fulfil her needs, and achieve her goals. Women have also been given the greatest gift of all – the capacity to LOVE.

Some women live like a candle burning bright, some with reserved tenacity. Both have their ways of imprinting their unforgettable mark on those they share their journey with, of bringing something singularly original into the world.

CV

Mara Ljutjuk was born in 1978 in Tallinn. She graduated from the EAA painting department in 2001, and studied there for her M.A in education sciences. She further studied at the Valencia Universidad Politechnica in 2007. She’s a member of the Estonian Artists’ Association and the Estonian Painter Association since 2006.  She’s participated in numerous group exhibitions since 2000, and had her first solo exhibition in 2004.  Besides painting, she has been curating and designing exhibitions and events, including her grandfather Evald Okas’ Museum programme, and the festival “I Don’t Understand” at the Telliskivi Creative City in Tallinn. She was awarded the Gallery G Art Prize in 2019, and was nominated for the Konrad Mägi Art Prize in 2020.

Mara is a mother of three children (2009, 2012, 2015). She lives and works in Tallinn. Her paintings are simple in their form and narrative in their content, while offering something for each viewer to identify with. Her motives might appear familiar because of their connection to aspects of our surroundings, relationships and nuances of life. With a sensitive touch, she captures fleeting moments, fragments of life, scenes that speak either directly or metaphorically about our daily, cyclical wanderings.

Kati Kerstna exhibition “Accessories”

Rapla County Centre for Contemporary Art
Jan 29 – Feb 27, 2022
Tue – Sun 3pm – 6pm
Tallinna mnt. 3b, Rapla

The UN has declared 2022 the Year of Glass: https://www.iyog2022.org/
To celebrate this undertaking, the Rapla County Centre for Contemporary Art launches its annual programme by proudly presenting a brand new exhibition of glass installations. Kati Kerstna’s “Accessories” applies glass and illumination in order to – literally – shed light on environmental issues.

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We regard our surroundings as accessories; whenever something gets lost or broken, we just exclaim “Oh s#!t, not again…” then shrug and go shopping for the next umbrella, handbag, shawl, or pair of gloves. Yet, no shopping trip can replace a species that’s gone extinct, and it takes decades – or centuries – to grow another full-fledged, functioning habitat.

Here, I present three new installations, made specially for the exhibition:

“Down” is a metaphor for our situation within the modern world and the ongoing climate crisis – a situation each of us might not even fully comprehend.
“Values” I and II turn the spotlight on biodiversity; I’m hoping to draw attention to, but also to evoke pride and joy in, our local, endangered, yet still fairly well-preserved natural riches.
“Agreement. Once, in Paris” expresses the importance of reaching agreements, and the inevitability of keeping one’s promises.

The installation “Agreement. Once, in Paris” was awarded the IRMA Collaborative grant for 2021.
https://www.irmacollaborative.com/post/irma-collaborative-annual-grant-recipient-2021

Why glass? For me, glass – with its transparency and reflections, its play of light, can add a touch of magic to even difficult topics, impart them with a kind of visual poetry, thereby hopefully sparking curiosity and caring instead of apathy; bringing about goodwill and a wish to participate. In today’s context, I dare even say – glass could give us an incentive to move with the times.

Kati Kerstna

avaleht

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Kati Kerstna represents the voice of environmentalism among Estonan glass artists – raising the question of whether it’s possible to be simultaneously an environmentalist and an artist working with an energy-intensive material such as glass. Solutions she’s come up with include using recycled glass, relying predominantly on cold techniques such as engraving and cutting, building wood-heated glass furnaces for which even the clay for the bricks is sourced locally, incorporation of non-permanent materials such as papier-mache, ashes and soot, as well as later repurposing her artworks as materials for new creations, but also for greenhouses and plant support – but also directly dedicating her works to topics such as pollution, deforestation, and global warming . She utilizes electronics and mechanical devices to create kinetic sculptures. Light always plays an essential part in her own installations, but also when she’s designing an exhibition with other participants.
She is known as an organiser and designer of numerous exhibitions home and abroad (Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Finland, Germany, Russia) and also as a long-time organiser of the Haapsalu hot glass symposia.

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The Exhibition is supported by: Cultural Endowment of Estonia, IRMA Collaborative,
EKDesign, the Rapla County Centre for Contemporary Art.

Special thanks to: Toomas Kukk (magazine “Estonian Nature”), Inguna Audere ja Michael Rogers (IRMA Collaborative), Merle ja Erki Kannus (EKDesign), Kairi Orgusaar (the Rapla County Centre for Contemporary Art)

Aivar Tõnso A RESOMATIC STILL LIFE

Aivar Tõnso “A RESOmatic Still Life”
Dec 4-19, 2021

Sound artist Aivar Tõnso combines the practice of spatial sound with  the expansion  of electronic synthesizer by different resonating materials. He is interested in the experience of movement within a spatially dispersed auditory artwork.  Instead of one fixed listening point, his approach is concerned with discovering sonic events at different points in space.  While in his site-specific sound environments the visuals are contributed by the naturally occurring surrounds, his works in gallery settings become enhanced by the sculptural properties of materials.  Aivar has been pursuing this approach ever since the first installation of the series “A Garden of Divergent Sounds” at the Tartu Art Hall. By now, he has reached a milestone where materials begin to affect the choice of sounds. Tõnso feels this is a liminal area, where care must be taken to avoid a situation where the visual aesthetics and sculpturality start to dictate and constrain the potential of sound in its creation of imaginary worlds in the listener’s mind. What remains most important is what happens at the meeting point of material and sound; in this gray area, a no man’s land, matter goes through excitement on an atomic level, and electronic sound gets transformed; uncontrolled processes take place – from the resistance of matter to the birth of new r(i)esomatic divergences.

For this exhibition, a 14-channel sound environment has been created using materials such as aluminum honeycomb panels, honeycomb cardboard, laminated plastic, reboard panels, resonance speakers, and more than 200 metres of audio cable.

Assistance was provided by Raivo Raidvee (installation), Maria Aua
(video) and Jaan Evart (graphic design). A big thanks also to Timo
Toots, whose earlier collaboration gave rise to a number of ideas present here.

Aivar Tõnso is a  musician, sound artist and an interdisciplinary
cultural event curator. He’s known for electronic music projects
Hüpnosaurus, Kulgurid and Kismabande. Curated projects including
Hea Uus Heli festival and Ulmeplaadid records company.  Creatively, he is interested in site-specific installations of spatial sound. He has furthered this interest with the Üle Heli festival, solo
projects, and MA studies at the EAA.

Recent sound projects:

2021 exhibition “Garden of Divergent Sounds 2” with Raul Keller, Taavi Suisalu, Katrin Enni and Sten Saarits (ARS Project Space)
2021 exhibition “Garden of Divergent Sounds” with Timo Toots, Eike Eplik and Tencu (Tartu Art Hall)
2021 film music for Maria Aua’s documentary “Rauaniit” and Ivar Murd’s experimental film “Küte”
2020 12 channel sound piece for the exhibition “Slow  Light” (RCCCA)
2019 site-specific  sound piece “Nordic Portal” (TAB 2019 /Musicity
Tallinn)
2019 site-specific  sound performance “Heliküte” with Mihkel Tomberg
(VKG viewing platform / festival Mägede Hääl)
2018 sound installation “Mirage 2.0” (Tartu Light 2018 festival indoor exhibition Vacuum as a Way of Thinking)
2018 sound installation “SEGA mets” (Maajaam, international techno art festival “Wild Bits”)
2018 exhibition “Cannot Believe the Eyes” with Maria Aua (Virtsu, Tööstuse st popup gallery, EV100 art programme)
2017 Tartu Arch Bridge first ever light and sound design (with Sten Saarits, Martin Rästas, Liisi Küla and Roman-Sten Tõnissoo)
2017 sound installation “Heart of Stone” (Museum of Stoneworking, Culture Night 2017)

How Contemporary Is Contemporary

Fall exhibition of the Estonian Painters’ Association
at the RCCCA

Oct 15 – Nov 7, 2021
Open Tue-Sun 3pm – 6pm
Tallinna mnt 3b, Rapla
Ja edasi:

Artists were invited to reflect on the topic of modernity and contemporaneity – a question plaguing artists in provincial areas worldwide – from Helsinki to Rapla – am I up to date? Even the Rapla County art centre bears the word “contemporary” in its name. Perhaps only New York is free from the pressure of keeping up.

“Contemporaneity” or “modernity” are not an issue in the art metropoli of the world – art being created there sets the bar for what is considered cutting edge. and they also offer the best opportunities for new art to reach its intended audience. But the audience requires novelty, demands to be surprised – and thus, a metropolitan “accent” evolves based on the colloquial artistic speech patterns in big art centres; this “accent” then becomes the normative grammar for the periphery.

The Estonian Painters’ Association used to hold its annual shows in our local metropolis. Nowadays, we’ve been relocated to Tartu, then Pärnu, Rapla, Võru and elsewhere. It is a bitter commentary to the policies of local art institutions that the medium of painting now finds itself homeless, permanently on tour. Looking on the bright side, painting has acquired widespread popularity through this process; “painting” still remains synonymous with “art” in the eyes of the public.

If we view the international painting scene through the lens of art fairs and biennials, the outstanding feature seems to be heterogeneity – we see interpretations of the Modernist heritage, retrospective revivals of past phenomena in art, the search for identity by artists of the so-called Third World – a colourful mixture of anything and everything.

A fresh injection of blood doping from art hand-picked by cultural anthropologists serves to satisfy the metropolis’ decadent cry for novelty, while these movements resonate in the most isolated, secondary corners of the planet. Zeitgeist is present, even in North Korea.

The current exhibition was deemed a valuable platform by a variety of personalities – from grand old names to Sunday painters. The dominant voice seems to be that of painters who habitually reflect upon their position as artists – those whose work emerges from inner impulses. Perhaps this makes them more convincing as creators?

Participants: Stanislav Antipov (1976), Paul Beaudoin (1960), Ove Büttner (1959), Jaan Elken (1954), Mauri Gross (1969), Ivi Arrak (1938), Kristiina Jakimenko (1991), Ashot Jegikjan (1955), Eva Jänes (1942), Ly Kaalma (1972), Kristiina Kaasik (1943), Liis Koger (1989), Gennadi Kurlenkov (1954), Maret Suurmets Kuura (1982), Anna Kõuhkna (1994), Mati Kütt (1947), Tarrvi Laamann (1973), Laurentsiust (Lauri Sillak,1969), Eneli Luiga (1994), Ene Luik-Mudist (1959), Helle Lõhmus (1962), Anne Moggom (1957), Lilian Mosolainen (1961), Marju Must (1987), Marko Mäetamm (1965), Karl Kristjan Nagel (1977), Ulvi Oro (1971), Tiiu Pallo-Vaik (1941), Anne Parmasto (1952), Per William Petersen (1955), Sirje Petersen (1959), Lii Pähkel (1969), Saima Randjärv (1954), Tiiu Rebane (1970), Piret Rohusaar (1961), Mari Roosvalt (1945), Uno Roosvalt (1941), Rait Rosin (1981), Leho Rubis (1975), Andrus Rõuk (1957), Toomas Sarapuu (1994), Karin Strohm (1986), Kuzja Zverev (1961), Karl-Erik Talvet (1991), Tiina Tammetalu (1961), Jane Tiidelepp (1971), Margus Sorge Tiitsmaa (1963), Maris Tuuling (1968).

Curator and exhibition designer: Jaan Elken.

In collaboration with: Tiiu Rebane (EML), Linda Elken, Riin Pallon (RCCCA).

Thanks to: Cultural Endowment of Estonia, Development Fund of Rapla municipalities

Merle Kannus. The Human Factor

Merle Kannus (b. 1972) opens her personal exhibition at the Rapla County Centre for Contemporary Art on March 18, 2021. The display gives an overview of the author’s recent creations from the last 5 years, and focuses on the human being – both individually and in relations with others of its species. The choice of works underlines the contrast between solitude and togetherness, and also the difference between voluntary and forced communication.

As a sign of the times, forced separation finds an expression in portraits of the author’s friends. The positive aspect of solitude is the topic of the installation “Gray Sky” and the rest of the gamut of human interaction is covered by autobiographical series of images titled “Weed,” “Small Conflicts,” “Pre-Time” and “Where All the Women Are Strong, All the Men Are Good-looking, and All the Children Are Above Average.”

The exhibition stays open until April 11, 2021.

Art Is Home

Some 50 artworks from the homes of Rotary Club members have found their way into this exhibition: paintings, watercolours and prints by authors such as Jüri Arrak, Malle Leis, Andrei Jegorov, Olev Soans, Evald Okas, Heitti Polli, Tõnis Laanemaa. In the words of club member Ruve Schank, the Rapla Rotary club calls for a deeper appreciation of art, including art that has found its way into homes. A good artwork can often give us energy for the day, or help us alleviate daily stress. 

Art may have its purposes within itself, or express a political standpoint, but in a domestic setting, we look for the kind of art which brings pleasure – and so, the current collection is mostly made up of landscapes, still lives and nudes, plus some portraits, and prints by Soans and Kaljo Põllu. 

Curator and exhibition designer: Valter Uusberg.
Graphic design: Kati Kerstna.

Slow Light


The Rapla County Centre for Contemporary Art presents:

SLOW LIGHT
An exhibition of glass & light objects
with spatial sound and moving lighting design

https://kultuur.err.ee/1162396/raplamaa-kaasaegse-kunsti-keskuses-uuritakse-klaasikunstnike-uudisloomingut
https://www.ohtuleht.ee/1018451/galerii-raplas-avati-klaasist-valgusobjektide-naitus?fbclid=IwAR0XHHCV9WDpTAtVsWEDJS-IHSDSdiq2YH73QAUMKG5QZfutmA-Ey1vVYKU

Light travels slowly on the Disc and is slightly heavy, with a tendency to pile up against high mountain ranges. Research wizards have speculated that there is another, much speedier type of light which allows the slower light to
be seen, but since this moves too fast to see they have been unable to find a use for it.

When light encounters a strong magical field it loses all sense of urgency. It slows right down. And on the
Discworld the magic was embarrassingly strong, which meant that the soft yellow light of dawn flowed over the sleeping landscape like the caress of a gentle lover or, as some would have it, like golden syrup.

Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels it finds the darkness has always got there first, and is waiting for it.

Terry Pratchett

The Rapla County Centre for Contemporary Art finalises its 10th anniversary programme with an international exhibition of glass & light objects titled Slow Light. A “living” display where luminous objects move in the dark space, casting shadows, reflections and surreal images. Others stay still, with only a pulsating inner luminescence revealing their hidden facets. Light and sound connect the pieces into a unified, abstract spectacle, where every work plays a role.

The exhibition offers an exciting gamut of ideas and techniques. Participating artists – celebrated internationally and locally – each have developed a unique vision and handwriting.

The year 2020, with its unexpected developments, has made us contemplate our environment and humanity from new angles. The works, most of which were created specially for the occasion, display both humour and wistfulness, but also deeper perceptions and reflections.

Participants:

Sofi Aršas, Piret Ellamaa, Merle Kannus, Erki Kannus, Kati Kerstna, Kai Kiudsoo-Värv , Eve Koha, Kai Koppel, Marilin Kristjuhan, Kairi Orgusaar, Aleksandra Pavlenkova, Rait Prääts, Birgit Pählapuu, Kateriin Rikken, Maret Sarapu, Eili Soon , Aivar Tõnso, Kristiina Uslar (Estonia), Torsten Rötzsch, Simone Fezer (Germany), Marta Gibiete (Latvia).

Curator: Kairi Orgusaar.

Exhibition, lighting and graphic design: Kati Kerstna.

Sound composition: Aivar Tõnso.

Opening Nov. 20.at18.00
The Rapla County Centre for Contemporary Art, Tallinna mnt. 3b, Rapla.
Open Nov. 21– Dec. 13, Tue-Sun 15.00 – 18.00.
Closed on Mondays.

Sponsored by:

Cultural Endowment of Estonia, CEE Rapla County expert group, Rapla Parish, Rapla County Municipalities’ Development Foundation.

TIMETRAVELLER

Johanna Mudist
Timetraveller
16.10-01.11.2020

The main focus of the paintings is the human and the nature surrounding it. The third important component, besides the body and the place, is time. Benjamin Franklin has said „Do not squander time, for that is the stuff life is made out of.“

In my work I do not deal with the agreed-upon time, but rather with psychological time, which we perceive when we experience waiting. When waiting, the perception of time changes, it broadens – it is a condition where the body is in the present, but the thought has already travelled elsewhere, to the potential future. This state is externally static, but internally anxiously intense. In my paintings, time is an element in which people are seemingly stuck, it is something that isolates and incarcerates.

In the paintings, the characters let the experience of silence, time and place sacrally run through themselves. Some figures are passively waiting for the tides or the wind, others have embarked on a quiet journey to find the way to a better past of future. They are wandering in a bit dreamlike, impossible situations and places. The paintings describe the destination of the the journey or the journey itself

BLUE

You are welcome to the opening of the painting exhibition “Blue“ in Rapla County Centre for Contemporary Art 28.08.2020 at 18.00.
Participating Maiu Albo, Mikk Allas, Lilith Holweg, Veranika Matukevitš, Heli Oksvort, Karin Polluks, Mari Põld, Marve Reede, Aire Rosenfeldt, Olga Sokk, Ave Tislar, Eteri Tõlgo, Marge Vonk.
This year’s theme of the exhibition is inspired by the color blue, which has also been considered a carrier of truth, contemplation and serenity. Every student interested in art has approached the topic from their own angle, giving the shade and nuances of the blue tone.
Some of the participants in the exhibition are already experienced artists, for whom it is already in several exhibitions, while others are just starting their first works.
The exhibition will be open 29.08-13.09.2020, Tue-Fri at 15.00-18.00 in Rapla County Centre for Contemporary Art (closed on Monday).

A Gift for the Homeland

JANINA MONKUTĖ – MARKS
(1923 – 2010)
A Gift for the Homeland

The Rapla County Centre for Contemporary Art is pleased to announce the opening of renowned Lithuanian-American artist Janina Monkutė-Marks on our premises on April… 2020. The exhibition became a reality thanks to the Janina Monkutė-Marks Museum in Kėdainiai, Lithuania.

Janina Monkutė-Marks was born in Radviliškis, Lithuania, Sept. 21, 1923; her father worked as a railwayman. Escaping Lithuania in 1944, she studiet at the Innsbruck University, Austria, and at École des Arts et Métiers, Freiburg, Germany, with a number of Lithuanian emigrants as professors – Antanas & Anastazija Tamošaitis, Vytautas Kasiulis, Vytautas Kazimieras Jonynas, Viktoras Petravičius.

In 1950 Janina resettled in the USA. Since 1956, she actively participated in the Chicago art scene, and was connected to the Hyde Park Art Center (Chicago) and the B.I.G. Arts Center (Sanibel, Florida). Her works have been exhibited by the Chicago Art Institute, The North Shore Art League (Winnetka, Illinois), Dunes Art Foundation (Michigan City, Indiana), Sun Times Gallery (Chicago, Illinois), Old Water Tower Place (Chicago, Illinois) et al; she had more than 20 individual exhibitions. She also participated in the events of Lihuaninan culture & art organizations, e.g. the Balzekase Museum of Lithuanian Culture, the Čiurlionise Gallery and the Museum of Lithuanian Art in Lemont.

Her early paintings and prints were influenced by the so-called Chicago Imagists (Leon Golub, Seymour Rossofsky et al), who stood in opposition to the 1950s mainstream of Abstract Expressionism, but also later opposed Pop Art, considering the primary task of art to be the expression of the artist’s personal experiences and emotions.

Between 1962-1966, Monkutė-Marks created a series of works utilizing the imagery of Pop Art; she later returned to her Lithuanian roots, finding inspiration in folk art motifs. The artist had a sizable collection of folk art from across the globe.

Since the 1970s, textile was Monkutė-Marks’s preferred medium of expression.

In 2000, the artist donated a major part of her creations to her native Lithuania, founding her museum in Kėdainiai, which opened its doors in 2001.
Janina Monkutė-Marks died in Chicago, Nov 13, 2010.

At the current exhibition in Rapla, we bring you a selection of Janina Monkutė-Marks’i linoleum block prints and tapestries.

The motif of road and journey is one of the most significant in the art of Janina Monkutė-Marks. Journey is interpreted as a quest for the meaning of life and soul-searching in the tapestries “Man and His World,” “Longing for Freedom,” “Going Home,” and “My Road.” Existential meaning is imposed even on the tapestries based upon “real” travel, such as “Going to the Wedding” and “Left Behind.” Janina Monkutė-Marks often portrays the feeling of “being on the road” as a labyrinth; one that has no beginning or end, no strictly positive or negative zones. It is as though the artist suggests that there is no chance to predict an upcoming turn of the road or escape the labyrinth. It is only possible to experience it fully.

Some of the artist’s linoleum block prints imitate the compositional scheme of traditional folk art (“My Road”, “Angel”); elsewhere, she combines the rough shaping of individual forms with geometric ornaments – these are substantial and generalized, represented not only by a contour line but also by entire silhouette. The artist fully employs the deep contrast and intensity characteristic of linoleum block printing. Floral and anthropomorphic allusions, geometric abstractions, traditional ornaments and the artist’s original motifs merge into a mysterious, magical world.

Janina Monkutė-Marks’s works are characterized by clarity of shape and exceptional compositional stability, intensity of colour and variability of texture. The subjective point of view and the courage to open up her inner world are not only recurrent but also some of the most valuable features of Janina Marks’s art, where the ironic and the tragic, the religious and the liberal, primitive and modern are elegantly combined.

Estonian Ceramists Associaton´s annual exhibition Õ

Õ is a letter unique to the Estonian alphabet. This exhibition celebrates the uniqueness of Estonian culture.

Participants:
Mare Vichmann, Haidi Ratas, Kersti Karu, Maia Noorväli, Kärt Seppel, Kattri Takklaja, Kersti Laanmaa, Eliisa Ehin, Anne Türn, Kadi Hektor, Merike Hallik, Reeli Haamer, Rave Puhm, Helena Tuudelepp, Georg Bogatkin, Eva Berg, Kadri Jäätma, Ann Nurga, Karin Kalman, Külli Kõiv, Urmas Puhkan, Anu Rank – Soans, Rita Randmaa, Pille Kaleviste, Ene Tapfer, Üllo Karro, Tiina Kaljuste, Aigi Orav, Margit Mald, Margit Terasmees, Henriette Nuusberg – Tugi, Marget Tafel – Vahtra, Leena Kuutma, Jarõna Ilo
Designer:  Üla Koppel

 Open 15.11 – 08.12.2019, T – P 15.00 – 18.00

Small Town as an Identity

The topic of this exhibition is the creation of identity as part of shaping the social organisation and quality of life in small towns, and the role that art plays in small town life.

Artists usually represent their own ideas and preferences in their exhibitions, while the surrounding settlement forms a dense network of connections, presenting the viewer with meanings and visual identity specific to the location. Residents’ opinions about art events reflect the daily life in the town, while expectations toward artists work towards shaping local identity.

The artist conducted interviews with artists who’ve had their solo exhibitions at the RCCCA and the Rakvere Gallery, videos of which are on display at the exhibition. There are also audio interviews with exhibition visitors. It is notable that, while artists see their work in a wider context, and tend to compare it with metropolitan events, the expectations of the audience retain local connections. Art is seen as a colourful distraction from topics that have real consequences for the lives of residents.

The artist also conducted a performance where he dragged a wheeled box representing future Rail Baltic through the streets of Rapla.

The exhibition is part of the author’s doctoral thesis – more info at www.pragmatist.ee