Author:
Mana Kaasik, Tartu 2024

University of Tartu Museum celebrates beginning of title year of European Capital of Culture

The opening week of Tartu 2024 culminates at 19:00 on 26 January with the ceremony 'All Become One!'. The Capital of Culture programme includes thirteen events and exhibitions by the University of Tartu Museum.

The opening ceremony of the Capital of Culture, directed by Taavi Tõnisson, tells us about Tartu, a city which dreams of the future and remembers the past. The events of the opening week usher in a year full of culture, in which the whole of Southern Estonia will participate. The projects of the University of Tartu Museum included in the main programme of the capital of culture, which comprise the lighting art in the Cathedral ruins and the installation 'Lifesaver' created by artist Valdek Laur introduce visitors to the mystical beauty of Toomemägi in the title year.

The lighting artwork of the Cathedral, 'Koit ja Hämarik' (Dawn and Dusk), which is inspired by Fr. R. Faehlmann's legend of the same name, was created on Toomemägi by the Light To Light agency in cooperation with lighting artists Chiara Carucci (Italy) and Alfred Sà (Spain). The new lighting solution allows both residents of Tartu and visitors to enjoy the beauty of Toomemägi and explore the 800-year-old ruins of the Cathedral even at night. The lighting artwork invites visitors to decipher cultural heritage in a new light, literally. The implementation of the new lighting solution has been supported by the City of Tartu, the University of Tartu, the National Heritage Board and Tartu 2024.

In the spring, however, we will open the artist Valdek Laur's installation 'Lifesaver' on the green slopes of Toomemägi, which will reawaken the park that has been shaped over the centuries with the help of culture and science. The installation aims to introduce the field of genetics to the public in symbiosis with art and science.

Among other things, several new exhibitions will be opened in the University of Tartu Museum in the title year, which are part of the additional programme of the capital of culture. The urban space festival 'Toome Müks' will take place as well. 'Invisible Tartu. 800 Years from the Beginning of the City', to be opened in autumn, speaks polemically and poetically about the birth of the city of Tartu. 'Toome müks' taking place on 14 September invites city residents to discover Toomemägi in a new way for the third year. The jewellery artists' exhibition 'Castle in the Air' offers visitors the chance to visit the attic of the Cathedral, which is not usually accessible. Exhibitions of the õhuLoss group have been organised in many places in Europe and China. The collective, consisting of alumni of the Estonian Academy of Arts, will introduce the art of jewellery and blacksmithing starting from 24 August.

The exhibition 'An Artist Without Homeland. Geislingen 1944 – Tartu 2024', opening in June at the University of Tartu Art Museum, looks back at history as well as at the present – on Ukrainian artists who found refuge in Tartu. In 1944, one of the largest communities of Estonian refugees was formed in the city of Geislingen in Germany. The exhibition tells of the situation back then, and the situation today, in the context of the war. The story of the assembly hall of the University of Tartu, shaped by the power and ideologies of a different era, will be told by the exhibition 'Power Shapes the Space. Political Image of the Assembly Hall of the University of Tartu', which will be opened in autumn. This way, the exhibitions opening at the University of Tartu Art Museum and the University of Tartu Museum let us dream about the future and look back on the past.

Until the end of 2024, visitors can see the outdoor exhibition of the winning works of the astrophoto contest in front of Tartu Observatory. In the spring, we will open an exhibition introducing the Frauenhofer refractor inside the observatory, which tells us about the biggest breakthroughs in the scientific world that were made in the observatory.

Check out all the events of the University of Tartu Museum that are part of the European Capital of Culture Tartu 2024 programme.

The University of Tartu Museum invites you to explore Toomemägi, the museum and the ruins of the cathedral and the rich scientific and cultural history of Tartu as part of the events in the Capital of Culture Tartu 2024 programme.

Tartu Ülikooli muuseum

University of Tartu Museum and four other museums are open until 20:24 on Thursdays