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Let’s Add Some Colour. Estonian Exhibition Posters from the 1980s

Let’s Add Some Colour. Estonian Exhibition Posters from the 1980s

Time: 17.01.18–06.05.18  10:00–18:00
Location: Kumu exhibition spaces

The increasing role of poster art in the 1980s’ art scene in Estonia was accompanied by experiments with printing techniques and artistic styles. The poster entered into dialogue with other types of art and introduced a number of innovative techniques into visual culture. Cultural posters in particular were characterised by ambivalent imagery, while photography was the dominant medium used by designers. On occasion, the design of the poster did not really match the content or title of the advertised cultural event, instead circumventing the requirements set on the poster as an informative medium, so that posters became works of art themselves.

The aim of this exhibition is not to give an exhaustive overview of the diversity of the exhibition posters in the era in question, but to create a dynamic space with the help of colourful artworks in order to stress the tension between the poster as a quickly perishable mass medium used outdoors and the autonomous work of art displayed in an art hall. The core of the selection consists of staged photos on posters that invited people to art exhibitions, playing with artistic motifs and images, from painter’s tools to colour splashes. The latter were often used to create a multi-layered or picturesque effect or simply to catch viewers’ attention.

Several of the posters also ended up on display at poster exhibitions in the 1980s, and the majority of them have earned places in the collection of the Art Museum of Estonia.

Villu Järmut (1948), Enn Kärmas (1943). 1983. Art Museum of Estonia