Regina Lukk-Toompere’s Jubilee Exhibition to Open on 2 October

Written by Helena Koch on . Posted in News, News of Centre

From 2nd October until 3rd November 2018, the Estonian Children’s Literature Centre presents a jubilee exhibition of Regina Lukk-Toompere. The exhibition features Lukk-Toompere`s book illustrations from 2012-2018 and illustrations that have been made for special exhibitions.

The artist commented:This exhibition is composed of illustrations I’ve done over the last six years, and have been rarely, if ever, been publicly displayed. Especially prominent in this exhibition are illustrations I did this year for an Estonian translation of works by the Dutch author Toon Tellegen, titled Kõik on olemas: Lugusid oravast, sipelgast ja teistest loomadest (Everything Exists: Stories of the Squirrel, the Ant, and Other Animals, translated by Vahur Aabrams). It’s the first time in my life I’ve illustrated a foreign writer, not to mention a world-famous one. A book’s success is favored by inspiring writing, and such is the case with Tellegen’s translation: I fell in love with his stories immediately.’

Regina Lukk-Toompere graduated in 1981 from the Estonian State Art Institute’s Graphic Art Department as a book designer and illustrator. She is a member of the Estonian Artists Association, the Estonian Graphic Designers Association and the Estonian Section of IBBY. She has illustrated and designed over 90 books and textbooks, as well as posters, record covers, postcards, magazines and packaging. Her works are held in the collections of the Estonian Museum of Art, the Estonian National Library and the Estonian Children’s Literature Centre, as well private collections in Estonia, Lithuania, France, Sweden, Finland, Ukraine and Russia.

Emma Press Publishes a Poetry Collection by Contra and Ulla Saar

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CLiPPA award-winning publisher The Emma Press is a publishing a collection of children’s poetry by Contra, an author dubbed ‘Estonia’s Michael Rosen.’

After the CLiPPA success of Kate Wakeling’s 2017 collection Moon Juice, the Birmingham indie has continued to expand its list of translated children’s books. Having explored school life in Latvia with Ieva Flamingo’s The Noisy Classroom (2017), now they are bringing popular Estonian poet Contra, whose playfully absurd, heavily-rhymed poems have made him a hit on Estonian television, at public events, and in schools, to English-speaking audiences for the first time.

A book of Contra’s poems about school, Everyone’s the Smartest, illustrated by Ulla Saar, is publishing on 28th September 2018. The publication received support from the Estonian Ministry of Culture.

The poems are accompanied throughout by Saar’s lively full-colour illustrations, which match the absurdity of the text line for line and stroke for stroke.

Emma Press director Emma Wright commented: ‘These quirky, fun poems, tell stories of playground and classroom life that will strike a chord with readers young and old – and will also teach them to look at school in a magical new way.’

Acquired in advance of the Baltic focus on the 2017 London Book Fair, Everyone’s the Smartest is a collection of children’s poetry suitable for reading to children aged 5+, and suitable for children aged 8+ to read on their own. The collection, like all Emma Press children’s titles, also comes with six pages of supplementary materials giving young readers prompts and tips to start writing their own poems.

But the publication was not without its challenges. Co-translator Richard O’Brien said: ‘There were times we thought: we’ll never be able to do this! The formal density of the poems meant it was like cracking an impossible code: every line rhymes, some of them twice, in the middle.’

Contra’s poems teem with tales of ice-skating, maths tests, and visiting aliens, and the translation team found some of them so inherently surreal it was hard to be sure they’d fully understood the text. As Charlotte Geater put it, ‘Before we could finish the draft, we had to make sure: is this poem really about a child skipping school to steal a snow-plough? Am I really reading an extended piece of Estonian wordplay about the class getting a visit from a famous zoo director?’

It was worth it, however, to introduce Contra to English readers. Born Margus Konnula in 1974, he is one of Estonia’s most prolific contemporary poets. Since his debut in 1995, he has published at least one poetry collection each year. He is a laureate of the Oskar Luts Prize for Humor and the Bernard Kangro Award for Literature; in 2015 he was awarded the Estonian Cultural Endowment’s Award for Children and Youth Literature. His popularity is such, according to Helena Koch from the Estonian Children’s Literature Centre, that ‘he has a profile here like Michael Rosen’s for English readers – children everywhere recognise him.’

Artist Ulla Saar has an equally impressive reputation. As well as illustrating Everyone’s the Smartest, she is a product designer, graphic artist, and interior designer. Her first illustrated book, Lift, was listed in the 2014 White Ravens catalogue by the International Youth Library. Since then, she has illustrated nearly 20 books, every one of which has gained international attention.

Everyone’s the Smartest was originally published in Estonian as Kõik on kõige targemad (2014). The Estonian edition won the 2014 Estonian Literature Annual Award for Children’s Literature.

It has been translated into English by Estonian poet and translator Kätlin Kaldmaa, along with Charlotte Geater and Richard O’Brien, who are poets and editors at The Emma Press. O’Brien has co-translated from Latvian previously, with titles including Juris Kronberg’s The Book of Clouds (The Emma Press, 2018) and Madara Gruntmane’s Narcoses (Parthian, 2018).

Exhibition of Estonian Illustration „Once Upon a Time…“ in Płock

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From the 7th of September until the 30th of September 2018, the Płock Art Gallery in Poland presents the exhibition “Once Upon a Time…”. Works by well known Estonian illustrators thematise internationally known fairy tales by the brothers Grimm.

In the exhibition, 20 Estonian artists participate with 59 works: Sveta Aleksejeva, Anu Kalm, Kristi Kangilaski, Kadi Kurema, Anne Linnamägi, Regina Lukk-Toompere, Ülle Meister, Tiia Mets, Jüri Mildeberg, Piret Mildeberg, Gerda Märtens, Viive Noor, Juss Piho, Anne Pikkov, Ulla Saar, Kertu Sillaste, Catherine Zarip, Tiina Mariam Reinsalu, Maarja Vannas-Raid and Urmas Viik.

„Once Upon a Time…“ is an extraordinary exhibition that travelled around Italy for two years in 2015-2016. in 2017, the exhibition was shown in the Estonian Children`s Literature Centre in Tallinn and in the Art Gallery of the University of Culture in Minsk. Since 2018, the exhibition has been travelling around Poland.

Organised in collaboration with the Estonian Embassy in Warsaw.

Illustration: Kadi Kurema, Sleeping Beauty

Piret Raud Participates in Festivaletteratura in Italy

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From 6th September until 8th September 2018 Piret Raud participates in Festivaletteratura festival in Italy. Raud introduces her books that have been published in Italian to young readers. The events are moderated by Vera Salton and Andrea Valente.

Piret Raud (1971) is the most successful contemporary Estonian children’s writer and illustrator. She has written 18 titles, has been translated into 12 different languages, and has illustrated more than 40 titles. Four of her books have been published in Italian so far: Emma Loves Pink (Sinnos, 2014), Princess Lulu and Mr. Bones (Sinnos, 2015), The Story of Sander, Muri, Eensy Mum, and the Invisible Aksel (Sinnos, 2018), and Trööömmmpffff o la voce di Eli (Edizioni Dehoniane Bologna, 2018).

Festivaletteratura is a literary festival, held in Mantua, Italy, since 1997. During five days it hosts authors from all over the world.

See also:
Festivaletteratura-Piret Raud
Festivaletteratura 2018 – Intervista a Piret Raud

Ülle Meister’s Jubilee Exhibition at the Estonian Children´s Literature Centre

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From 4th September until 29th September 2018, the Estonian Children’s Literature Centre presents a jubilee exhibition of Ülle Meister. The exhibition features Meister`s book illustrations that mainly focus on fairy tales. In the Stairway Gallery watercoloured paintings are exhibited.  

Ülle Meister (1948) graduated in 1973 from the Estonian State Art Institute’s Graphic Art Department as a book designer and illustrator. She has illustrated over 130 children`s books and textbooks. Since 1974, Meister has participated in exhibitions in Estonia and abroad, including Columbia, Japan and Germany. Her works are held in the collections of the Estonian Children’s Literature Centre, the Estonian National Library and in private collections around the world. Ülle Meister is a member of the Estonian Artists Association, the Estonian Graphic Designers Association, the Estonian Section of IBBY and the Estonian Watercolour Society.

Additional information: Viive Noor, Curator, (+372) 55 579 930, viivenoor@gmail.com

The Opening of the exhibition „Secret Lives“ in Jerusalem

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The exhibition „Secret Lives“ will open to the public on the 23rd of August 2018 at the Skizza Gallery in Jerusalem. It is a group exhibition by Estonian illustrators.

In the exhibition, four artists participate with their works: Regina Lukk-Toompere, Kadi Kurema, Viive Noor and Urmas Viik. The works include book illustrations that can also be seen as independent graphical works. The addressee of the exhibition is rather a grown-up person. Visitors can glimpse the personal world and secret lives of the artists.

The exhibition is part of the program celebrating the Estonian 100th anniversary.

Organisers: Estonian Embassy in Tel Aviv, Estonia 100, Jerusalem House of Quality, Skizza Club & Gallery.

Additional information: Viive Noor, curator, viivenoor@gmail.com, (+372) 5557 9930

The Opening of the Exhibition by Lena Revenko and Irena Aizen on July 31st

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On Tuesday, 31st July 2018 at 4pm the exhibition by Lena Revenko and Irena Aizen (Israel) opens at the Estonian Children’s Literature Centre. The exhibition is open until August 31st.

Illustration: Lena Revenko “The fox is carrying me past the darkest wood”.

Further information: Viive Noor, curator, viivenoor@gmail.com, 634 0080, 5557 9930

Exhibition of Estonian Illustration „Once Upon a Time…“ in Szczecin 

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From the 6th of July until the 5th of August 2018, the Pomeranian Dukes’ Castle in Szczecin, Poland presents the exhibition “Once Upon a Time…”. It is an extraordinary exhibition introducing Estonian illustration that travelled around Italy for two years. The illustrations thematise internationally known fairy tales by the brothers Grimm.

In the exhibition, 20 Estonian artists participate with 59 works: Sveta Aleksejeva, Anu Kalm, Kristi Kangilaski, Kadi Kurema, Anne Linnamägi, Regina Lukk-Toompere, Ülle Meister, Tiia Mets, Jüri Mildeberg, Piret Mildeberg, Gerda Märtens, Viive Noor, Juss Piho, Anne Pikkov, Ulla Saar, Kertu Sillaste, Catherine Zarip, Tiina Mariam Reinsalu, Maarja Vannas-Raid and Urmas Viik.

The exhibition is accompanied by educational programmes for children and workshops for families.

Organised in collaboration with the Estonian Embassy in Warsaw.

“Running with Wolves”: a new Werewolf Art Exhibition

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Starting June 5, 2018, “Running with Wolves” – an international illustration- and doll exhibition from St. Petersburg – will be exhibited at the Estonian Children’s Literature Centre, and will remain open until June 13, 2018.

Every year, the international exhibition “Doll Time” – an event of remarkable proportions – is held in the spacious halls of the St. Petersburg Union of Artists. The 21st of these was on display in Russia’s cultural capital until just recently: May 23rd. Over the last few years, the ArtBalkon balcony in the grand exhibition hall has been reserved for the internationally-renowned doll exhibition curator Tatyana Mokhryakova, who uses it to exhibit her top-tier projects. This year, however, the balcony exhibition transformed into an entirely independent project that involves the cream of the crop of doll artists (and also illustrators) from six different countries. Naturally, Estonia was likewise involved.

Since inspiration for the project came from the “Running with Wolves” illustration exhibition of Baltic states artists – one which included the works of several Estonian illustrators – the two projects became tied closely, and the same name was used for the St. Petersburg exhibition.

The Estonian Children’s Literature Centre’s Stairway Gallery and attic display cupboards could not fit all the works that were open to the public in St. Petersburg, so only a selection of the pictures and dolls are featured. The current exhibition is an extention of the werewolf pieces already on display in the Centre: it appears that the subject of werewolves (and wolves in general) is a highly popular one among artists, regardless of state borders.

The illustrations of six different artists are hung in the Centre’s Staircase Gallery: works by Sveta Aleksejeva (Estonia), Appias Albina (Lithuania), Ilvita Didrihsone (Latvia), Anna Silivonchik (Belarus), Yelena Bryzgalova and Olga Filippova (Russia).

Works by eighteen doll artists are on display in the Centre’s Fairy Tale Attic: Anna Davidenko and Jüri Mildeberg (Estonia), Nadezhda Kravchenko (Kazakhstan), Ksenya Shinkovskaya (Lithuania), Krista Kipure (Latvia), Tatyana Gomza (Belarus), Natalya Beltyukova, Olga Gerr, Marina Glebova, Maya Khokhlova, Irina Yablochkina, Natalya Krutova, Ika Kulyukina, Andrei Nikitinskikh, Natasha Pobedina, Tatyana Serykh, and Maria and Svetlana Zabrodskaya (Russia).

Additionally, the Centre’s Fairy Tale Attic currently houses the doll and graphic arts exhibition “The Spirits Who Surround Us” by the renowned Austrian-Russian doll artist Tatyana Gurina.

Glenda Sburelin’s Exhibition at the Estonian Children’s Literature Centre

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Until July 13, 2018, visitors to the Estonian Children’s Literature Centre’s Illustration Gallery are able to enjoy the works of Glenda Sburelin: one of Italy’s most renowned book artists, who also happens to be one of the world’s best illustrators.

Sburelin (1972) rose to fame not only because she has illustrated close to 40 books published in several different countries and has had works displayed in the most prominent international illustration exhibitions, but also due to the fact that she persistently ties the art of illustration to other art forms, thereby expanding its borders. Having studied photography and graphic art, Sburelin often blends photos and various graphic techniques into her illustrations. She works with a wide range of materials and tools ranging from coloured pencils to collage. Sburelin’s style is truly “mixed media”, in which all possibilities the artist can fathom are implemented. A perpetual experimenter and seeker of new opportunities, she always finds a way to surprise the viewer.

Only a cross-section of Sburelin’s works is displayed in the Estonian Children’s Literature Centre. The selection is furthermore taken solely from her illustrations, while all her fragile works (ceramics and other pieces) have been omitted for the sake of space and coherency. The artist’s photography and other hard-to-define creative experiments have also been left out on this occasion. Even so, the exhibition is a definite must-see for all book- and illustration enthusiasts.