This autumn the largest contemporary art biennial in Estonia, Tallinn Photomonth (06.09.–03.11.2019) presents three international curated exhibitions, an experimental art film programme and an art fair in Tallinn.
Laura Toots, the biennial’s artistic director said that this year’s Photomonth is more compact than the last time and takes a more concise and content-focused approach. “We are extremely glad to introduce the curators of the main programme of the upcoming Photomonth. Their exhibition concepts and synergy are extremely fascinating to us as commissioners. In a wider context the biennial discusses how art relates to economy, politics and contemporary society,” adds Toots.
In a closed curatorial competition Heidi Ballet, Post Brothers with Simon Dybbroe Møller and Hanna Laura Kaljo were chosen as curators of the three main exhibitions of Photomonth.
The committee of the curatorial competition included artist Marge Monko, artist Kristel Raesaar, curator at Tallinn Art Hall Siim Ghert Preiman, director of the Contemporary Art Museum of Estonia Marten Esko, director of the Estonian Contemporary Art Development Center Karin Laansoo and directors of the Tallinn Photomonth 2019 Kadri Laas-Lepasepp and Laura Toots.
Heidi Ballet is an independent Belgian curator based in Berlin. Her exhibition at the Contemporary Art Museum of Estonia, on show 07.09 – 20.10.2019, highlights our alienating relationship with planet Earth. Ballet’s broader curatorial practice focuses on researching oceanic territory.
Post Brothers with Simon Dybbroe Møller are curating an exhibition at Tallinn Art Hall, open between 14.09 – 17.11.2019. Post Brothers is a curator at Kunstverein München, originally from California. Møller is a Danish artist based in Berlin, researching media development and highlighting the interactions between the media and people. This jointly curated exhibition discusses images and objects and routines that are not photography but are photography-like.
Hanna Laura Kaljo is curating an international group exhibition at the new Kai Art Center, open between 21.09 – 01.12.2019. Kaljo’s curatorial practice nurtures connectivity between creative practice and wellbeing, thinking through the individual, the community, as well as the ecological register. Drawing on both artistic and therapeutic practices, the project explores the potential of exhibition as recovery.
In addition to the three exhibitions, Tallinn Photomonth is presenting an experimental film programme in the Sõprus cinema, focusing on the relationship between the black box and the white cube, documentary and fictional narrative film, and film and video art. The film programme is curated by artist and filmmaker Ingel Vaikla.
The biennial’s satellite programme includes many smaller shows in exhibition spaces in Tallinn and other temporary events. Between 24 – 29.09.2019 Tallinn Photomonth is hosting its Professional Week, a week of networking events that coincides with the 9th edition of Foto Tallinn art fair.
“Our Professional Week, organised for the second time, is a week of versatile events, created with the aim of prompting discussions between Estonian and international arts professionals and developing opportunities for collaboration. This could result, for example, in international exhibitions, smaller events or book projects,” comments the biennial’s managing director Kadri Laas-Lepasepp. During the week an additional special programme of events, tours, screenings and book presentations is tailored to attract international visitors.
Tallinn Photomonth was initiated in 2011 by the non-profit Fotokunstnike Ühendus MTÜ (Foku). The year 2019 marks the biennial’s fifth occurrence. Photomonth brings new international exhibitions and events to Estonian audiences and encourages them to critically view the visual culture of today. The aim of Photomonth is to facilitate networking between local artists and international curators and critics, while also developing the contemporary art market in Estonia.