Exhibition 'Memories from Altai Krai' by Liisa Kruusmägi at the Tallinn City Gallery

2024 01 25 — 2024 03 31 at Tallinn City Gallery
Author Echo Gone Wrong
Published in Events in Estonia

You are cordially invited to the vernissage of Liisa Kruusmägi’s personal exhibition Memories from Altai Krai tomorrow, January 25th, at 18:00 in Tallinn City Gallery. The exhibition unravels the story of the artist’s ancestors who journeyed to the vast Siberian region in search of a better life.

Primarily recognized as a painter, Liisa Kruusmägi shifts her focus to the comic genre in this exhibition, presenting a narrative of migration. The display captures the diverse facets associated with emigration: while Siberia is often remembered in our collective consciousness for the sorrow and tragedy of deportations, Kruusmägi offers an alternative perspective, illustrating the optimistic journey to forge a better life in Siberia. “Having worked in the field of illustration, it was crucial for me to craft an exhibition where images tell a story. Liisa’s grandmother’s written memories provided fascinating material for this purpose. The objective was also to challenge preconceived notions about comics as a form of expression. Comics extend beyond popular characters like Mickey Mouse or caricatures in daily newspapers; they serve as a captivating medium for narrating more profound and serious stories,” explains Anneliis Lepp, the curator of the exhibition.

Comprising drawings, paintings and ceramic objects, the exhibition draws inspiration from the diary of Liisa Kruusmägi’s grandmother, which encapsulates fragments of memories from their time in the Estonia Village, portraying it as a period filled with strenuous labour but also moments of enjoyment. It was an era marked by both joy and human loss.

Liisa Kruusmägi (1988) is an Estonian painter and illustrator. She studied painting as a bachelor at the Estonian Academy of Arts and finished a master’s degree in drawing there in 2013. Kruusmägi has improved herself at the Rhode Island Schools of Design. Her recent solo exhibitions include Cephalopods with Binoculars at Vaal Gallery (2022), Balearic Liisa at Stella Soomlais Studio (2022) and Colours of Corals with Maarja Mäemets at HOP Gallery (2021). Her works can also be seen in the street scene: she has painted large murals on the north side of Paide Pritsumaja and above the entrance of Tops Bar in Tallinn.

Anneliis Lepp(1988) studied art history and visual culture at the Estonian Academy of Arts. She is specialised in children’s book illustration and the relationship between the meaning of the picture and the word. Lepp has collaborated with Estonian Children’s Literature Centre and has written numerous articles on children’s book illustration.

An exhibition tour with the artist and curator is scheduled for 16 March. The exhibition will be open until 31 March.

The Tallinn Art Hall Foundation is a contemporary art establishment that presents exhibitions in two galleries in 2022–2024 – at Tallinn Art Hall’s Lasnamäe Pavilion and Tallinn City Gallery. The exhibitions of Tallinn Art Hall are installed by Valge Kuup.

Tallinn City Gallery (Harju 13, Tallinn) is open from Wednesday to Friday 12–6 pm and from Saturday to Sunday 12-7 pm.