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Opening of the Vabamu Museum of Occupations and Freedom Exhibit “Masters of Our Own Homes: Estonia at 100” in Toronto

September 29, 2018 the exhibit by the Vabamu Museum of Occupations and Freedom Masters of Our Own Homes: Estonia at 100 was opened in the parking lot of Tartu College in Toronto. The exhibit will be on display from September 28 – October 19, 2018, 24hrs. The travelling exhibit pavilion with light installations is 12 metres wide and 4 metres high, it weighs 4 tonnes and is compiled of 244 panels, each one telling a small part of Estonia’s colourful and exciting history as well as featuring highlights of present-day Estonia. Students, businesses, a number of Estonian photographers including Annika Haasi, Birgit Püve, and Triin Kerge as well as many Estonian museums contributed to the completion of the exhibit. Through five topics – history, culture, what it means to be Estonia, famous citizens of the world, and innovation – the exhibit features solutions and contemporary movements associated with Estonia that are recognized by Estonians abroad and are an inspiration to people all over the world. Simultaneously, the exhibit introduces Estonian design and service industries, encourages people to travel to Estonia and search for collaborative opportunities with local businesses. The location of the exhibit, in the Tartu College parking lot at 9 Madison Ave. in Toronto, is the future home to the Estonian Centre (opening 2021). The exhibit opening was well attended during Nuit Blanche and the following three weeks. The Toronto Estonian Supplementary School students also visited the exhibit spending a school evening with Sander Jürisson from Vabamu and Piret Noorhani from VEMU. Sander Jürisson who had travelled to Toronto to help put up the exhibit also gave a lecture at VEMU about the renovated Occupations and Freedom Museum in Tallinn. The exhibit travelled on from Toronto to Boston, where it can be viewed during the Baltic 100 events in November. Read more about the exhibit here View the Estonian Life Newspaper photo gallery here

Read more October 1, 2018
Opening of the exhibit “Estonia Through 100 Pairs of Eyes” in Toronto

The exhibit is on display in Toronto at VEMU from September 22, 2018-January 14, 2019. On September 22, the exhibit “Estonia Through 100 Pairs of Eyes” was opened at the Museum of Estonians Abroad, VEMU. The exhibit, dedicated to the Republic of Estonia’s big birthday, reflects a visual story of Estonia, which is told by 100 Estonians and Estonian spirited people ages 1-100 through their portraits, eyes, and emotions. The oldest model, 100 years old, was born the same year as the Republic of Estonia in 1918. The youngest came into this world on February 24, 2017. The exhibit presents one Estonian for every year of the Republic of Estonia. In parallel to the portraits, the exhibit introduces Estonia as a place, where we come from, where we live. Thus, there are also 100 images of some of the most well-known places in Estonia (i.e. The Old Town of Tallinn), buildings (farmhouses), emotions (the Song Festival), accomplishments (e-Estonia), and phenomena (bogs). All of these examples give someone who does not know about Estonia an idea of our country, culture, nature, technical achievements, cuisine, and traditions. These two visuals, the portraits and sceneries, are intertwined by short texts in Estonian and English. The idea and concept of the exhibit is by Kaire van der Toorn-Guthan and Toomas Volkmann. The exhibit curator is Kaire van der Toorn-Guthan. The portraits were taken by one of Estonia’s most recognized fashion photographers Toomas Volkmann. The Estonian sceneries are by distinguished nature photographers Tõnu Runnel and Tõnu Tunnel. The project leaders Kaire van der Toorn-Guthan and Toomas Volkmann participated in the exhibit opening by presenting the book featuring the exhibit to the Toronto portrait models. Maria Valdmaa and Jaan Ots performed musical accompaniments to open the exhibit.

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