“Transparency Register” by Sten Eltermaa


Sten Eltermaa's personal exhibition Transparency Register wil be open in Draakon gallery from Tuesday, February 4th, 2020.
Transparency Register is a project based on image and language, making the windows and facades of governmental authorities visible to the audience. The project involves various layers: reflective window transparencies, photographs on the wall and on the showcase table, and publication of the artist's research.
The title of the work, Transparency Register, also refers to the US-inspired database introduced in 2011 to shine public light on the communication between lobbyists and the representatives of EU institutions. The database’s main objective is to create trust in regard to institutions and the policies the institutions or their representatives are pursuing, but also oversight to make it impossible to do the bidding of murky and corrupt interests.
In general, parallels can be drawn in the context of this work with the architecture used in modern and postmodern institutions of power and governance, and the rhetoric that liberals have used or currently use – specific, technical, rational, inaccessible and often conducive to apathy and mistrust: a “cold” selection of material (concrete and stone, glass and steel) and intricate engineered load-bearing structures. The buildings are often homogenous and based on repetition and their facades are made up of regular vertical and horizontal lines – so that they are reminiscent of a crossword or Sudoku. There is the sense that the interiors might be the same way – a monotonous, Kafkaesque world that is easy to get lost in. I would argue that architecture of this type is of a rational type and also reflects the rational rhetoric characteristic of liberal force.
Present exhibition displays photographic series taken in Brussels and Tallinn in 2016-2019, depicting institutions of power and governance, whereas the focus being on the windows of these buildings. Many landmark buildings should be recognizable to the viewer on these photographs, for example, the seats of the European Parliament, the European Commission, the Council of the European Union, Eurojust, Europol, the International Criminal Court and the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia. In addition, the sites include several local institutions in The Hague, such as the Supreme Court of the Netherlands, the Hoftoren, the headquarters of the Dutch national police force, The Hague City Hall and a number of ministry and embassy buildings. The buildings photographed in Brussels also include several EU buildings in the European Quarter as well as embassies and local government institutions.
The selection in Tallinn includes the “Superministry” building, the IT Agency, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Harju County Court and the Tallinn City Government.
Sten Eltermaa (1986) is an artist-writer who is intrigued by the environment, power and borderline conditions. Eltermaa has studied philosophy in Tallinn University, photography in Pallas University of Applied Sciences and at the Estonian Art Academy, having complemented his education at Escola Superior Artistica do Porto, Royal College of Art The Hague and LUCA School of Arts.
The artist's gratitude goes to: Marge Monko, Sven Parker, Olesja Semenkova, Arvi Anderson, Digifoto, Estonian Academy of Arts
Exhibition will be open until February 22nd, 2020.
Finissage of the exhibition will be on February 22nd at 18.00
Supported by the Cultural Endowment of Estonia.
Exhibitions in Draakon gallery are supported by the Cultural Endowment of Estonia, Estonian Ministry of Culture and Liviko Ltd.
Additional information:
Draakon Gallery
Gsm: +372 56 451 591
         +372 52 85 324
Tel: +372 6 276 777
Pikk 18, 10133 Tallinn
Mon–Fri 11.00–18.00
Sat 11.00–17.00
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