16th Tallinn Print Triennial


Literacy / Illiteracy

The Tallinn Print Triennial project titled LITERACYILLITERACY / KIRJAOSKUSKIRJAOSKAMATUS continues to deal with this old topic with the goal of finding new development scenarios for graphic media in the current situation where medium-specific art has become a problematic phenomenon.

If art is no longer differentiated on the base of formal traits, and the graphic arts are in a discourse related to art history, one might ask, if some traditions have passed the test of time, how should we regard them and how should we involve them in the discussion?

The traditions of classical art and experimental contemporary art are based on two different levels. Traditional art, despite its original solutions and fleeting breaking of the rules, strives to affix structures that are already comprehensible and fixed for the ordinary viewer, by opposing the established rules only to reaffix them again.

Contemporary experimental art, on the other hand, considers its main purpose to be the conscious breaking of the rules, and to fulfil this goal, involves traditional approaches in the crisis, which it uses to distort these same approaches.

LITERACYILLITERACY / KIRJAOSKUSKIRJAOSKAMATUS is a “project in progress,” an open project comprised of a set of game-like situations that symbolically starts from the “artist-text” platform that was modelled a long time ago. A text may be written, but we more broadly envision a recycling relationship, in which pictorial material and various visuals are interpreted.

In our project, the artist assumes the role of translator, interpreter and de-constructer with the task of finding new facets for the organisation of materials. The space for movement between literacy and illiteracy unravels on a field comprised of many familiar concepts like translation and interpretation.

If he or she wishes, the artist may become the de-constructer of the concept of literacy, who, right from the start, proceeds from a position that is destined to fail.

The 16th Tallinn Print Triennial “Literacy /Illiteracy”, curated by Maria Kjaer Themsen, presents works of visual art that are produced using mechanical or digital reproduction or printing technologies, produced between 2011 and 2013 on the topic of “Literacy / Illiteracy”.

Each applicant is asked to write additionally 5-10 lines about how their work is related to the concept of the Triennial. We expect individual works or series (measurements and number is not limited) that would not cover more than 10 sq m of wall space. The selected artist from the open-call will be part of the 16th Tallinn Print Triennial “Literacy / Illiteracy”.

The selection of works consists of two phases:

  • Phase A – Sending digital material. Deadline: 22.07.2013
  • Phase B – Selected artists.

Art works must reach Tallinn by 10th January 2014. Artists selected for Phase B should send their works (at their own cost) together with completed entry form to the address specified in the e-mail individually sent to each selected artist. However, the designer of the exhibition together with the organizers of the Triennial has the right to exclude some works from exhibiting due to unforeseen circumstances (e.g. the original of the work doesn’t coincide with the image of the preview photo, lack of space etc.).

Particiaption fee

Participation fee is meant to cover charges related to send the art works back to the artists after the exhibition and to post the exhibition catalogues. Methods of payment will be announced to selected artists.

  • Phase A: Free of charge. We accept only digitally sent materials.
  • Phase B: European countries – € 30;
  • Non-European countries – € 40;
  • Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania – free of charge


  • Grand Prix – €3000
  • 3 Equal Prizes – €1500.
back to top

We value your privacy

To make sure that this website remains accessible in the European Union, we are forced to include this superfluous notice to inform you that this website, like most of the websites in the world, works best with cookies. We do not profile you or use the data for any commercial purposes except to study ways to enhance user experience in ours sites. We hope that you are happy with that, and that you will help us continue this research by accepting our cookies but, unlike with other websites, surfing our site in privacy is still possible should you decide not to. You can find out more about our use of cookies by reading our privacy policy.