Saturday, November 15, 2014

Estonian thorns and German leaves


Arrowgroup (Triinu Jürves and Villem Jahu)
Jan Glöckner
Silke Kleine Kalvelage
Kaarel Kütas

We quit and left for Tallinn.
That is me and Silke, together we'd run the project space SUEDHAIN during documenta 13 in Kassel. We were worn out from making exhibitions, from working so hard to draw an audience and wanted to concentrate on our own art. There we met Kaarel, a former border guard at the european/russian border, and did three exhibitions together. One at Galerii Metropol, the smallest art space there is in Tallin. 6 sqm. The visitors had to enter only in pairs of two at a time. Then we met Triinu in Laulasmaa, which means singing-land, and sat together over soup and ideas. I remember being in a train leaving for Pärnumaa with Villem and jumping out in the very last minute, as my car was parked illegaly and would be seriously fined. During this time I've learnt a different approach towards making exhibitions. And the essence goes like this: First you pick artists, you fix a date, then you decide what art and how to present it. Every exhibition I attended in Estonia was uniquely tailored to the space and to the people. Nothing was off-the-shelf. And these events were made to be experienced. One was close to the artist and to the very moment when art was happening, or not. It was okay to fail. That's normal when you are experimenting.

Comparing Germany and Estonia works best on the basis of the different behaviour in a sauna. In Germany small saunas are being closed and big Spatemples are being built. Pouring water on hot stones is being elevated to the hourly event and has to be done by a specially trained person. The master of ceremony. In the sauna everyone has to be naked. Except for the master of ceremony, who then pours stinking-junk-infused water over the hot stones and waggles round a towel. In the end everyone claps and runs out.
In Estonia you don't do anything of that kind. Who wants to may be naked but a bathing suit is also fine, after all you're in a sauna to relax. Pouring the water is done by the person nearest to the oven until anyone else in the sauna says:"That's enough for now!" Then you hit yourself and others with leaf clusters. This is a good feeling and not a trace of anger remains.

text: Jan Glöckner

Please note:
From 8pm to 10pm there will be an open Estonian self
built feelgood Sauna with leaf clusters and guided sauna
tours. Bring a towel if you like.

Open : Sat. 15.11.2014
Exhibition: 20.00h - 01.00h / 8pm - 01am
Sauna: 20.00h - 22.00h / 8pm - 10pm
Duration : 08.11.2014 (One-Night only)

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