Estonia 100 art programme introduces the Muslim community of EstoniaPublished: 13.01.2019

Documentary photographer Annika Haas is opening the exhibition ‘Anatomy of the Estonian Muslim Community’ on 10 January at 6 p.m. in the lobby gallery of the National Library of Estonia within the framework of the Estonia 100 art programme.

Photo: Annika Haas

According to the organisers of the exhibition, social groups that differ from the general population are a good mirror for the whole of society. Thus, the exposition provides an opportunity to look at oneself and the community of Islamic people who have existed in Estonia for centuries, to gain knowledge about its stratification and formation in relation to migration culture.

See the photo gallery of the opening of the exhibition here.

‘By fearing the many influences of the world that reach us in our homes, we can see what we want in the mirror and around us, as opposed to seeing what is actually there,’ believes the photographer Annika Haas. She adds: ‘The purpose of this art project is to bring Estonians and the Muslim community closer to each other, so that we understand different sides of people’s personal stories and their connection to Estonia.’ 

Muslims have been living in Estonia since the 16th century, and the artist says they’ve therefore had a place and role in our society for a long time.

‘And so, my current exhibition looks into the formation story of the local Islamic community, as well as their part in the history of diversity in Estonia,’ notes Haas.

Combining photography, video and sound art, the project has built up a narrative from historical material to contemporary collected stories. The verbal hints to the visual, but leaves room for the viewer to ponder and form their own opinion.

The exhibition ‘Anatomy of the Estonian Muslim Community’ was born in cooperation between the Estonian Islamic Centre and the Estonian Refugee Council. The author of the exhibitions is Annika Haas and the designer Katri Haarde.

The exhibition in the lobby gallery of the National Library of Estonia is open until 26 February. 

The Estonia 100 and Centre for Contemporary Arts Estonia joint project ’Travellers and Settlers’ was sponsored by Cultural Endowment of Estonia, Ahti Heinla, Jaanus Juss and Telliskivi Creative City, and Digiprint. Valge Kuup, Digifoto, Digiprint, Overall Eesti, 4Room, Valgusklubi and Elo Liiv, videoID and Kaisa Sammelselg, Senza Fine and Arno Mikkor, and Viktor Gurov contributed to the design.

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