Siim Preiman

Curator's foreword

The exhibition brings together six works of art from last year dealing with the experience of the human body in the broadest sense. “Body” as a subject matter is more than appropriate for one of the sub-sections of the Spring Exhibition, as it fits in perfectly with other similar key issues of being human that have been addressed at Tallinn Art Hall over the years, including “self”, “freedom”, “life” and “exoticism”.

At the core of this set of works is not the performativity of body in its narrow sense or its social or gender determination, but something more general as a whole. Our planet has been described as a spaceship on which humankind is flying through space, so we could think of our bodies as vessels of flesh in which our consciousness is destined to move on its path. Although we can think of bodies as useful machines, they differ from other vehicles precisely in that we cannot choose them by colour, body type or wheel power. They are precisely as slender, stocky, rosy or angular as they are, no more and no less. This premise feels wonderful and devastating at the same time, and coping with it can be playfully easy for some and cause endless anxiety for others.

Solveig Lill and Hanna Piksarv deal with the inner universe of the body: the former exploring the fantastical-molecular sphere, the latter, on the other hand, working with the realm of emotions. Mari Volens juxtaposes the natural body with artificial forms. Kelli Gedvil and Cloe Jancis reflect on the effects of beauty ideals on virtual and physical bodies, and Brit Kikas explores the boundaries of obscenity and sincerity.

Despite the fact that we are alone in our bodies, people are social creatures; they can only flourish in the company of others and wither in isolation. Restrictions on movement imposed on us more than a year ago have proved to be a challenge for our bodies. I do not know if this exhibition will invigorate the growing longing for bodies in our society. Hopefully, the works at the exhibition will offer a joy of recognition to some and present something new to others. In any case, do not forget to take care of your own vessel of flesh to make sure that it will safely carry you to your destination!