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On Tuesday, November 2nd at 18 opening of Merike Estna´s personal exhibition UNTITLED
The exhibition in ArtDepoo displays Merike Estna’s paintings from her different series called “Mirror, mirror on the wall, is it Art or is it Porn?“, “Painting“ and “There must be something more than what there is“, all completed in 2008-2010.
Whatever gave the initial impetus for creating the paintings, the common element in all of them is snow – figures against snowy landscape, various scenes and motifs in an even white snowy haze creating sweet, emphasised dreamlike visions.
The artist herself says about her work:
“After receiving an invitation from ArtDepoo for an exhibition, I went to the studio and took out the paintings I had there. I discovered that on most of my paintings completed during the last year I had depicted snow. On one hand snow has offered intriguing solutions to me as an artist regarding painting technique; on the other hand it represents to me the longing for home, the nostalgic Estonian snow... Still the key issue for me as a painter is the capability and position of painting art in present time.“
Estna who started to paint with pop and hyperrealistic elements has moved through expressionistic style to naïve. Yet despite the manner of painting that is just means for the artist and not the objective itself, Estna has adhered to largely the same subject range – woman’s roles and woman’s body (in a wider sense than the purely feministic treatment) and the associated issues of identity and power.
Merike Estna is a so-called foreign Estonian painter whose creative work has been influenced by the desire to search for and discover her own possibilities as a painter which is expressed also in the experiments of the current exhibition. Her works do not stay focused merely on external solutions but continue going deeper into the composition range so characteristic to Estna – paraphrasing male and female figures separately and in each other.
While ignoring the academic painting style, Estna has developed an individual “handwriting” which naïve notating technique serves the purpose of the content, not focusing too much on details, conveying the idea.
Her works can be viewed casually, walking by, catching only the playful, erotic compositions that do not seem to compel for anything. Yet at more thorough analysis of the pictures we find challenges therein where the sweet fairytale-like first images and the reality of the artist’s actual vision radiating through are in strong opposition with each other. It can be said that by the nature of their content Estna’s paintings stand far from the misleading sweetness.
Looking at the girl who rides on the cloud-horse we can see the beauty of dreams that on the other hand is too beautiful to be true. It is as if the artist leads us to think about things that we should search from behind the pictures that are too beautiful, making hints that we should never believe what we see and are presented to. But what could be the reality behind Estna’s pleasing visuals is at everyone’s own liberty of interpretation.
Merike Estna acquired Bachelor’s degree in painting from Estonian Academy of Arts, completed MA studies in Interdisciplinary Arts and acquired Master’s degree in Goldsmiths College in UK.
Exhibition will openend untill November 27th.
Organizers thank Santa Helena wines.
Look more HERE