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Annely Köster: In Place of a Summary

Gracie and Annely Köster. Photo: Alver Linnamägi

The contemporary art triennial for school students Eksperimenta! 2014 combined the objectivity of science with the subjectivity of art. We wanted to give young people a chance to speak about what matters to them: from (il)legal drugs, alienation, (self-)censorship, media influence, sustainable development, ecology, semiotics and first impressions to observations of nature and self-reflection. A chance to speak a universal, metaphoric, visual language.

Preparing for the triennial, we were aiming to bridge contemporary art and (art) education and to broaden the reach of art. However, in the process, the shadow curriculum of the triennial became increasingly clear – it lies in intergenerational cohesiveness and understanding, the amplification of young voices. This offers us as parents, teachers and educational officials a chance to see, hear and understand, as long as we take the time for it. If we provide opportunities to be independent and responsible, we get socially sensitive, self-governing, proactive and responsible People in return. We gain a better future.

Creativity does not save the world, but it makes it easier to understand and cope. It helps see endless problems not as frustrating distractions, but as opportunities for inventing and discovering something new.

Our November newsletter contains impressions from the exhibition. Prof. James Elkins shares his opinions in a video and curators from different countries do the same in writing. Deputy Mayor of Tallinn, Mihhail Kõlvart, admitted after visiting the exhibition that he had been hoping to experience aesthetic enjoyment, as art is supposed to be beautiful, but that was in vain… Instead, he got something much more important – he learned about the things that the younger generation contemplates and about their ways of thinking, and realized what the reason behind Eksperimenta! ultimately is.

The reasons for organizing Eksperimenta! are also what the Joonmeedia clip is about – animated interviews with the director of the triennial Annely Köster to review once more what Eksperimenta! is and what it is not.

Eksperimenta! 2014 was made possible thanks to wonderful people and amazing cooperation. A great and sincere ‘thank you’ goes out to all the authors, curators, supporters and volunteers – I hope to see you back in Tallinn in three years’ time! My special gratitude and the award for calmness and understanding, however, is extended to the teachers and students of Sally Stuudio, as well as the Great Dane puppy Gracie.

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