Main Exhibition: Terike Haapoja “Muse”

National Library of Estonia, Orange Group Room in the Information Centre, 5th floor, Tõnismägi 2 
Opening times: Mon–Fri 10:00–20:00, Sat 12:00–19:00
Ticket information: free entrance 
Accessible by wheelchair

Terike Haapoja’s video installation “Muse” presented at the National Library of Estonia is part of the main exhibition of the contemporary art biennial Tallinn Photomonth Intensive Places at the Contemporary Art Museum of Estonia (EKKM). The exhibition is curated by The Creative Association of Curators TOK / Anna Bitkina, Maria Veits.

The work can be visited Mon–Fri 10:00–20:00 and Sat 12:00–19:00 in the period from 4.09 to 17.10.2021.



Muse is the centrepiece in Terike Haapoja’s 2020 series Dialogues on Love and Art. The series, recorded and edited during the first year of the Covid-19 pandemic, consists of dialogues with her friends, family and significant others that discuss the relationship between art and love, eternity, the more-than-human world and activism. Muse portrays the artist with her father, sculptor Zoltan Popovits, and significant others musician Samuli Putro and playwright Kristian Smeds on her home island in the Baltic Sea archipelago. The other parts in the series (not on view at Tallinn Photomonth) present dialogues with visual artist Eija-Liisa Ahtila, Sámi theatre director and activist Pauliina Feodoroff, artist Newton Harrison and Sámi artist and activist Jenni Laiti.

If this year has taught us something, it’s how much we need each other. We are interdependent materially and spiritually: without bodily, emotional and intellectual connections with others, we suffocate. Art is not born from thin air or from divine inspiration: everything that we live amongst and interact with speaks in our art practice. Here, it becomes urgent to cultivate relations that are loving. Love is not a noun but a verb: it means attentiveness, presence, making space, making time, giving priority. These features could describe political action as well: what love and politics have in common is this engagement with the world and its others.Terike Haapoja. New York, 22 October 2020

Single channel HD video, 15’28”, stereo sound2-channel video installation, 65’

Video and editing: Terike Haapoja
Music: Samuli Putro
Sound design: Mikko Virmajoki and Ville MJ Hyvönen
Post-production: Helicam Oy / Ville MJ Hyvönen
Subtitles: Saga Vera / Maarit Tulkki

Zoltan Popovits is a Hungarian sculptor, who has worked and lived in Finland since 1965. Samuli Putro is a Finnish singer and songwriter. Kristian Smeds is a Finnish playwright and theatre director.

Terike Haapoja is a visual artist based in New York. Haapoja’s large scale installation work, writing and political projects investigate the mechanics of othering with a specific focus on issues arising from the anthropocentric worldview of Western modernism. The question of animality and the possibility of a community of difference are recurring themes in Haapoja’s work. Haapoja represented Finland in the 55th Venice Biennale with a solo show in the Nordic Pavilion, and her work has been awarded the ANTI prize for Live Art (2016), the Dukaatti prize (2008), an Ars Fennica prize nomination, a Finnish State Media art award (2016) and the Kiila prize (2013). Haapoja’s work has been exhibited widely in solo and group shows internationally, including the Taipei Biennale, the Momentum Biennale, the Museum of Modern Art in China, Chronus Art Center Shanghai, ISCP New York, House of Electronic Arts Basel, and ZKM, Germany. Terike Haapoja is an adjunct professor at NYU, New York.

Information: Kulla Laas, +372 58050009

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