Your guide to Estonia and Beyond Spring and Summer 2024


Your guide to Estonia and Beyond Spring and Summer 2024

Top Picks

Kris Lemsalu – DONATELLA. Spiral of Life

Tartu Art Museum, Tartu

16 March – 21 July

Known for the striking costumes she makes for herself and her works, Kris Lemsalu combines porcelain, fur, wool, textiles, silicone, found objects, sound and other materials in her works with an original sense of humour to create surreal scenes that are both dizzyingly symbolic and playful. In addition to Lemsalu’s interpretation of one of Tartu’s landmarks, the fountain frozen in an eternal kiss, the exhibition will premiere Lemsalu’s biopic Old Piano, produced in collaboration with Johanna Ulfsak, a selection of new drawings and more familiar installations.

Difficult Pasts – Connected Worlds

Tallinn Art Hall

10 August – 20 October

The exhibition highlights the events of the 20th century and their lasting impacts on our everyday lives. The contemporary artworks included in the exhibition often reveal the invisible or marginalised effects of past violence in the Baltic region, including those related to various minority communities and women. Curated by Margaret Tali and Ieva Astahovska.

Still from the film Old Piano by Kris Lemsalu and Johanna Ulfsak, 2024


Kristina Õllek Converting Energy and Oxygen (Grid no. 3), 2024 at Kai Art Center Photo by Hedi Jaansoo

Tuomas A. Laitinen and Kristina Õllek – Cyanoceans

Kai Art Center, Tallinn

26 January – 4 August

Using the ocean as a connecting element throughout the exhibition, the duo exhibition by Laitinen and Õllek reflects on whether humans as a species are ready to adapt to the challenges of new climate conditions in the near future.

Down in the Bog – Thinking with Peatlands

EKKM, Tallinn

14 June – 1 September

The curator Karolin Tampere’s  group exhibition focuses on peatlands as a meeting point for art, environmental issues and the public. Peatlands act as a guide and compass, to learn about historical, cultural and contemporary changes in the environments around us in Northern Norway / Sápmi, Estonia and selected locations internationally.

Jüri Kermik’s Suffolk Knot

Estonian Applied Art and Design Museum, Tallinn

13 September – 30 December

Designer Jüri Kermik’s exhibition Suffolk Knot focuses on regionalism in the choice of materials, details and construction methods for seating furniture. It shines a light on the peculiarities and commonalities of furniture-making traditions in the English region of Suffolk and Estonia.

Jevgeni Zolotko – The Secret of Adam

Kumu Art Museum

31 May 2024 – 5 January 2025

Jevgeni Zolotko’s solo exhibition The Secret of Adam presents the artist’s recent works, including some brand new works created specifically for the exhibition. Curators: Triin Tulgiste-Toss and Eero Epner.

Jüri Kermik, Moon Cycle Weave, 2023

Ülo Sooster’s 100th anniversary exhibitions

Ülo Sooster: Prison and Love, 8 March – 22 June, Estonian History Museum’s Great Guild Hall, Tallinn

Sooster 100. View from Private Collections, Mikkel Museum

Ülo Sooster (1924–1970), whose artistic career and life were cut short, left behind a legacy of thousands of drawings and paintings, which belong to the European surrealist heritage despite having been created on the other side of the Iron Curtain.

There and Back: The Pilgrimages of Livonians in Medieval Europe

Niguliste Museum, Tallinn

9 March – 8 September

The exhibition looks at pilgrimage in medieval Livonia (current day Estonia and Latvia) and the impact pilgrims had on destinations they visited both near and far.  Their activities left various traces in the local material culture of the time: from the symbols used in art and on everyday items to the clothing worn by pilgrims and the souvenirs they brought back from their travels.

Homo Ludens. Ilmar Malin 100

Galerii Pallas, Tartu

8 July – 17 August

Ilmar Malin (1924–1994) has been called the grand old man of Estonian surrealist art. This exhibition focuses on his portraits and figural compositions, next to which the movement towards surrealism is highlighted as a separate line. In addition to paintings, the exhibition includes drawings, printmaking, assemblages and monumental works.

Sõltumatu Tantsu Festival

Sõltumatu Tantsu Lava, Tallinn

26 September – 5 October

The programme of the first ever Sõltumatu Tantsu Festival focuses on presenting the performances of international choreographers with a side programme of talks, workshops and dance events: Ukrainian Dance Platform, Modina dance and technology, and the Nordic Students Showcase.

Also see our guide to exhibitions, art events and experiences in Tartu and South Estonia.


15th Baltic Triennial

CAC, Vilnius

Opens on 6 September

The 15th iteration of the Baltic Triennial, curated by Tom Engels and Maya Tounta will be exhibited at the soon-to-be-reopened Contemporary Art Centre in Vilnius.

Anu Põder: Space for My Body

Muzeum Susch, Susch

Until 30 June

The first large-scale institutional retrospective dedicated to the multidisciplinary Estonian artist Anu Põder (1947–2013) outside her native country, bringing together more than forty works dating from 1978 to 2012. Anu Põder’s practice explores the human body, highlighting the fragility, impermanence, and ephemerality of life in a series of highly evocative sculptures. Curated by Cecilia Alemani

We Don’t Do This

Mo Museum, Vilnius

9 March – 1 September

The exhibition We Don’t Do This. Intimacy, Norms and Fantasies in Baltic Art will presents works by both well-known and still under-acknowledged Lithuanian, Latvian and Estonian modern and contemporary artists, reflecting on corporeality, sexuality, a affection, attachment and vulnerability, capturing and recording the changing political and cultural identity of the Baltic States.

Down the Rabbit Hole

MO Modern Art Museum

11 April – 3 November

The exhibition delves into paganism, spirituality and conspiracy through diverse artworks by Baltic artists. The show suggests looking at paganism and spirituality as a romanticised historical refuge, pointing to its transformation during recent years, as it increasingly takes on conspiratorial elements dressed in corporate language. Curated by Justė Kostikovaitė, Maija Rudovska, Merilin Talumaa.

Breaking up of ice on a river

Margot Samel, NYC

17 May – 22 June

An international group exhibition exploring traditions and future utopias. Curated by Lilian Hiob.

Rita Lira, The Trap at MO Modern Art Museum,Vilnius. Photo by Mauricio Saldaña
Down the Rabbit Hole, Darja Popolitova-3D Jewellery Fortune Telling. Photo by Carter Seddon