Anneli PORRI (curator)
Herkki Erich MERILA, Marge MONKO, Tanja MURAVSKAJA, Alissa NIRGI, Birgit PÜVE, Mark RAIDPERE, Peeter TOOMING, Anna-Stina TREUMUND, Sigrid VIIR
The title borrowed from Marge MONKO‘s photo series emphasizes the role of photography as a psychoanalytic method: a good portrait surprises or even shocks the person being portrayed, as it reveals something new about him. For photographers, the exhibited portraits are also a means of analyzing themselves. Revealing what’s behind the face we show to the outside world, uncovering intimate and hidden aspects is undeniably one of the greatest charms of the portrait genre. What happens in the model’s mind between two poses? Who are family, friends, and guests to the photographer? How close can the camera get us to people who are very different from us?
The exhibition of images made between 1983 and 2017 gives insight into contemporary Estonian portrait photography as well as the country’s society and recent past through the photo’s models and contexts. The heroes of the singing revolution, the subcultures of prisons, the ethnography of the Kihnu Island, the people of the Soviet era in front of a background reminiscent of the first Republic of Estonia – these are just a few of the themes. “I believe that the human face is the best document of time”, writes Birgit PÜVE in the accompanying text of one of her series. The human faces of the exhibition speak of history, identity, memory, human relationships and globalization.
An official Budapest Photo Festival program.