Tallinn Art Hall: Spooky days

09.01.2013 – 10.02.2013

Spooky days

Erki Kasemets


Spooky Days

Call for civil actions in monumental art at Tallinn Art Hall from January 8 until February 13. The events will be opened on January 8 at 6 pm.

The Estonian multitalented installation and performance artist Erki Kasemets extends the personal collection display of his life-long conceptual painting art project Life-file which he started at the end of the 1980s already, with a democratic call for public action. Everybody is invited to take part in the project and make their personal contribution.

The title Spooky Days refers to the public oniomania during the January sales campaigns and discounts of the big department stores (one of the stores has the image of a ghost as their logo and mascot). Erki Kasemets goes further and hyperbolizes by making all of the displayed art freeware that can be altered using the visitor’s own imagination. 

Erki Kasemets was first educated as a scenographist, then as a painter, but he is foremost a conceptual artist. In 2002, the above mentioned project Life-file was acknowledged for daily addressing painting art by the jury of the Konrad Mägi Award, one of the most important art awards in Estonia. The main task of the project has been to paint a milk carton every day and mark the date on the package. Over the course of the project a colossal archive has been formed that displays a colourful array of the artist’s everyday life. The colossality of the work is the reason it has only been exhibited partially in Estonia, in its neighboring countries and Europe. And only now, in 2013 it will be possible to see it in its full volume, filling the entire space of Tallinn Art Hall. All the floors, walls and ceilings are covered with a chronological garland that starts from the so-called perestroika and is free to be prolonged by the visitors to and for the future. Through the action of painting the present time, everybody can be a part of this monumental artwork here and now and exhibit themselves in propria persona or anonymously in the largest and the most prominent gallery space in Tallinn’s city center.

Erki Kasemets is also known for his wall-size installations of painted gin cans that form “electronic displays” that broadcast vital messages. In Tallinn Art Hall, a “Real Freedom Clock” covers the big gallery windows that face Freedom Square. Unlike the other public clocks or the Freedom Square, the real freedom clock shows whatever time that visitors happen to see fit. It is a time measurement system that shows the time that the visitor as modifier of the artwork wants to be displayed to other visitors and people on the square. The exhibition team is of the opinion that the democratisation of time-measurement as well as of all dispayed art is an important step towards becoming part of the family of European nations.

The newspaper Kasemetsa Hääl (The Voice from Birch Forest, it is a word-game. The name of the artist means Birch Forest in Estonian) is published and distributed at the exhibition. It is possible to make arrangements for tours with the artist and curator and there is an education program for children.

Exhibition curator : Johannes Saar, exhibition design : Villu Plink.

The exhibition is supported by the Estonian Cultural Endowment.

The exhibition will be open from January 9 until February 10. A performance will take place on February 13. The exact time will be announced in due time.

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