Anu Vahtra (1982) is an Estonian artist who is renowned for her artistic approach to site-specific space-oriented problematics and for the diligent methods of articulating them. Her installations, which often include the medium of photography, capture the surrounding space into itself, making the site become both the subject and the physical form of the artwork. Currently lives and works in Tallinn.

STUDIES

2005 – 2007 Gerrit Rietveld Academy, Amsterdam, photography BFA
2002 – 2005 Estonian Academy of Arts, photography BA
2004 I–V Bergen Academy of Art and Design, Norway, photography
2001 – 2002 Tallinn University, art education

SOLO EXHIBITIONS / PROJECTS

2016
Forms of adaptation. This space intentionally left blank. Chimera-Project Gallery, Budapest HU
An exhibition as a post factum operation. An intervention at the Rietveld Pavilion, with curator Nico Anklam, Amsterdam NL
A fact in space. After exhibitions. Hobusepea and Draakon galleries, Tallinn EE
17,9º. Installation at the Contemporary Art Museum of Estonia (EKKM) in 2012 & 2014 adapted for Art Brussels 2016 non-profit section, with EKKM, Brussels BE
A room made of blank pages. Kjubh Kunstverein, Cologne DE
2015
Chimera Art Award Exhibition. Chimera Project Gallery, Budapest HU
2011
Untitled (a line has two sides aka any of the twenty-four triangles). Estonia Av. 15A, Tallinn EE
2009
Homage to Gordon Matta-Clark. A4, Amsterdam NL
2005
Sketchbook. Deconstructing Pärnu: locations, individuals. Rael Artel Gallery, Pärnu EE

SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS / PROJECTS

2015
From Explosion to Expanse. Estonian Contemporary Photography 1991–2015. Curated by Anneli Porri. Tartmus. Tartu EE
Smugglers. Narracje Festival #7. Curated by Anna Smolak. Public space of Nowy Port district, Gdansk PL
Köler Prize 2015 Nominees’ Exhibition. The Museum of Contemporary Art of Estonia (EKKM), Tallinn EE
MEEL. VAHTRA. FARKAS_idealist function. Curated by Maria Arusoo. Contemporary Art Centre (CAC), Vilnius LT
2014
Grain, Wood, Flax, Turf. Brought together by Glenn Geerinck. Voorkamer, Lier BE
Feeling Queezy?!. Curated by Rebeka Põldsam. The Contemporary Art Museum of Estonia (EKKM), Tallinn EE
Archeological festival_a 2nd hand history and improbable obsessions. Curated by Maria Arusoo. Tartmus, Tartu EE
Side Effects II. Curated by Laura Kuusk and Pascale Riou. Ancien Musée-Bibliothèque Grenoble, Grenoble FR
2013
Where You End, I Begin. Curated by Anneli Porri. Tartu Art House, Tartu EE
Romeo and Julia. Curated by Anneli Porri. Y-gallery, Tartu and 1 May Gallery, Tallinn EE
2012
III Artishok Biennale. Curated by Liisa Kaljula. The Contemporary Art Museum of Estonia, Tallinn EE
Archaeology and Future of Estonian Art Scenes. Curated by Kati Ilves. KUMU Art Museum, Tallinn EE
The Science of Photography. With Na Kim. Curated by Lee Young Joon. Daegu Photo Biennale 2012, Daegu KR.
2011
Time to Meet: The Second Act – A Festival on Photography Goes Live. Curated by Chris Clarke. De Brakke Grond, Amsterdam NL
Everybody is Possible But Nothing is Real. Brought together by Bernd Kleinheisterkamp. Aeroplastics Contemporary, Brussels BE
Fire & Ignorance. A collaboration with Idan Hayosh, Anders Hana and Morten J. Olsen. CTM Festival, Festsaal Kreuzberg, Berlin DE
2010
Above the City. Curated by Kadri Klementi & Helis Heiter. Tallinn City Gallery, Tallinn EE
Time to Meet: Sugary Photographs with Tricks, Poses & Effects. Novylon, Antwerpen BE
2009
Amsterdam Biennale: Tallinn pavilion. Mediamatic, Amsterdam NL
We Belong Together. Supernova, Riga LV
Fire & Ignorance. A collaboration with Idan Hayosh, Anders Hana and Morten J. Olsen. Henie-Onstad Kunstsenter, Oslo NO and various other locations around Europe
2008
EP–Residency 2008, Artblock Hoyerswerda. Hoyerswerda DE
Doings or Not. Curated by Margit Säde & Laura Kuusk. Vžigalica Gallery, Ljubljana SI
The Polaroid Show. Curated by Eyal Pinkas. Apartment Gallery, Amsterdam NL
2007
I. Curated by Margot Kask. Hobusepea Gallery, Tallinn EE
Time to Meet: Wie Sieht's Denn Hier Aus?! Forum für Kunst und Architektur, Essen DE
Save the Last Dance. P/////AKT, Amsterdam NL
2006
Dislocated. Curated by Margot Kask. VAAL Gallery, Tallinn EE
Time to Meet: Pigeons on the balcony invites guests. P////AKT, Amsterdam NL
2005
Stilleben. Curated by Rakett. PROJEKT 0047, Berlin DE
2004
Video 2004: Video Art from Northern and Balticum. Bergen Art Hall, Bergen NO

GRANTS / AWARDS

2015 Köler Prize 2015 Grand Prix
2015 Kristjan Raud Award, nominee
2014 Sadolin Art Prize, nominee
2013 Annual Award of the Cultural Enowment of Estonia (with Lugemik)
2010 Nordic Culture Point
2009 Mondriaan Foundation

RESIDENCIES

2014 Contemporary Art Centre (CAC), Vilnius LT (with Lugemik)
2010 Sørfinnset Skole / the nord land. Sørfinnset, Gildeskal NO
2009 STEIM. Amsterdam NL
2008 EP–Residency 2008. Hoyerswerda DE

BIBLIOGRAPHY

2015 Mari Kartau. Anu Vahtra: kui ruum meie ümber muutub, siis saame sellest aru puhtalt seda tajudes, kultuur.err.ee, 18. VI
2015 Marten Esko. Murrangu lävel, Sirp, 5. VI
2015 Jürgen Rooste. Kartul, siga ja kägu, Sirp, 15. V
2015 Toidublogi, Eesti Ekspress, 13. V
2015 Hanno Soans. Koos Köleriga nüüdisaega, Eesti Ekspress, 7. V
2015 Janar Ala. “Põhjala Jeruusalemm, tondid ja kirjasõna”, Postimees, 4. II
2014 Kadri Karro. "Areeni Kunstiaasta 2014", Eesti Ekspress, 31. XII
2014 Laura Põld. "Intervjuu Anu Vahtra ja Paul Kuimetiga", Positiiv nr 19/2014
2014 Indra Devriendt. "Platform Time to Meet in Voorkamer Lier. Fotografie in de kijker", H ART Magazine #132, 16. X
2014 Veroonika Valk. "Episoodiline küsimus", Müürileht, 18. IX
2014 Kaire Nurk. “Pornograafiline maastik”, Kunst.ee, 2014/3
2014 Hanno Soans. "Pööritustunne aistinguturul", Sirp, 22. VIII
2014 Ingrid Ruudi. "On a Mission", Modernists, Issue #4 Summer 2014
2014 Piret Karro. “Arheoloogiafestivalil tuleb meelde, et kõik on ajutine”,
Müürileht, 14. VII
2014 Heie Treier. “Kolm vaadet Tartu arheoloogia­festivalile”, Eesti Ekspress, 6. VIII
2014 Kaire Nurk. “Kas postmoderni pessimistlik lunastusetõotus?”, Sirp, 24. VII
2014 Mari Kartau. "Viltune maja sai toed", kultuur.err.ee, 19. VI
2012 Marika Agu. “Artishoki biennaali jõujooned”, Sirp, 2. XI
2012 Saara Hacklin. “On photography and the city: Anu Vahtra's invasive, transient images”, artishok.blogspot.com, 23. IV
2010 Hanno Soans. "Kunstnikud käivad katuseid mööda", Postimees, 15. IX
2009 "Sketchbook. Deconstructing Pärnu: locations, individuals", Hotell Pärnu. Rael Artel Gallery: Non-Profit Project Space 2004–2008
2009 Margit Säde. "Backstage at the Tallinn Pavilion", Estonian Art
2007 Laura Kuusk. "Some examples of young Estonian photography", Estonian Art
2006 Andrus Lauringson. "Puudumine teeb meeled teravaks", Sirp, 24. XI

MISCELLANEOUS

2013–… Lugemik Bookshop, with Indrek Sirkel
2011 The Second Act – A Festival on Photography Goes Live, part of curatorial think tank and overall coordination
2010–… Lugemik Publishing, with Indrek Sirkel
2009 A4, temporary art space, initiated and ran with Paulien Barbas and Kathrin Klingner, Amsterdam NL
2009 – 2011 Fire & Ignorance, a collaboration with Idan Hayosh, Anders Hana and Morten J. Olsen (of MoHa!) developed and performed in various locations around Europe
2008 – … Guest teacher in Estonian Academy of Arts, Tallinn EE
2008 European Postgraduate Residency, initiated and organized with Lisa Premke and Kathrin Klingner, Hoyerswerda DE