Ryo Kiyohara (JP) // Impressions of Tartu

TAiR was my first international artist in residence participation. I stayed in Tartu for three months from mid-April to mid-July. TAiR provided me an apartment and a studio for producing artwork. It was quite large and very comfortable to live in Tartu.

During the first month after arriving in Tartu I walked around the city and studied the history of Tartu and Estonia. The research was not very thorough but it made me understand that I don’t know deeply about my own country, either.

Also, Salme and Lemmit gave me the possibility to interact with artists many times. I found the clue I was looking for from my research and interactions with people and I decided what will be the theme of my works.

My traditional production stance uses motifs of historic buildings and images. There is little consciousness of history in everyday life, but there are still many remains in the city of Tartu. That is forming the city of Tartu.
In the exhibition which I did at the end of my stay, I used them as the main motif and displayed the paintings of Tartu in the gallery and reproduced the city with artworks. It was my first attempt and I think that it was a good result.

My stay in Tartu has expanded the range of themes that I can use in my work and it has made my work grow.

I appreciate TAiR’s members who gave me a special experience.

Photos by: Mana Kaasik

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