Arts and Crafts Exhibition at EP2018

SESKKE 25. jaan. 2019

EP2018 was finally here!
We barely had time to finalise the painting of the plinths, the completion of decorative works and lastly our pledged entries for the exhibition. As always, there is never enough time to ensure that all preparations for the event is 100 percent complete.

Arts and Crafts Exhibition at EP2018
Knitted koala climbing a tree (by Helen)

It was warm and balmy leading up to the festival and this the prestigious Art and Craft Exhibition of the 27th Estonian Festival in Australia.

The fabulous team of volunteers ensured that the exhibition was delivered to you with as much professional flair that could be provided for your later enjoyment. The trusty volunteers painted the plinths, installed picture rails and converted the office and wall space within Sydney Eesti Maja into a gallery exhibition where a visitor can enjoy a leisurely visit once or time and again.

“Threads that bind us” the title of the Exhibition, was named after the song that Paul Kadak wrote.  “Threads that bind us” led us to the front gate which was adorned with classic Haapsalu inspired knitting.  The yarn-bombing continued down the tree lined entrance pathway to the Eesti Maja.  Lachlan Bell had, with the help of his friends, painted an Eesti vöö motif along the entrance brickwork, and the yarn-bombing tied in very effectively.

The yarn-bombing was successful in drawing visitor’s attention and leading them to the correct place!  Before we had even had the official opening, a passing French tourist approached us and wanted to see the exhibition!

 The opening night of the 27th December 2018 was here.  The food was prepared by visiting Chef Peeter and our members, celebratory drinks were also provided.  The official opening speeches were delivered by Aet Madison (EP2018 committee), Ingrid Renno and Virge Nielsen (Exhibition representatives).

The 2nd Edition of the Estonian Handicraft Association Cookbook “Austraalia eestlaste lemmiktoite - Australian Estonian Favourite dishes” was launched by Mai Buchert.  The recipes were cooked and baked and taste tested and instructions were standardised and updated where necessary.  This whole process from compilation to production took one year of work by the volunteer handicraft group members.  This edition of the cookbook is presented with colour photography with all recipes in Estonian and English and sold like “piparkoogid’.  Copies are still available and by contacting the Sydney Estonian Handicraft Association.

 The exhibition opened its doors, where every visitor to the Exhibition had the opportunity to vote in a Viewer’s Choice Award which was awarded for the most number of votes for Art and Craft sections. The Art Viewer’s Choice was awarded to Erik Nigol for his beautiful painting titled “Sõled”.  The Craft Viewer’s Choice was hotly debated as to whether it was actually art or craft, since it essentially incorporated both disciplines. In the end, the winner, Lachlan Bell for “Inglismaal 1949”, still had the most votes for craft.

EP2018 was fun filled with something for everyone. The Art and Crafts Exhibition at Eesti Maja was certainly popular with 180+ visitors over the five advertised days. The paintings were much admired and the käsitöö was also well regarded. It is great to see the talent that is out there among the Estonians and people with Estonian heritage. The Exhibition would not have been possible without the support of these talented artists and artisans – a huge thank you to everyone who contributed!

Koidula Muttik’s embroidered bell pull of European birds and animals was purchased by a visitor for delivery to a historic house in Bath, England.  EP2018 has provided many unforeseen opportunities to the artist or artisan.  We also overheard of an invite being given to one of our gifted young artists to join and present works in a 2019 art exhibition in Sydney.

The Sydney Estonian Handicraft Association, the EP2018 Committee in collaboration with Sydney Eesti Selts hope that you enjoyed the event and that you were able to admire, photograph or purchase culturally inspired keepsakes or art and craft work.


Sydney Estonian Handicraft Association (SESKKE)