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Signe Kivi to Become the Director of the Tartu Art Museum

6. April 2017 - 15:14

Signe Kivi was chosen as the new director of the Tartu Art Museum, and will assume the position as of June 26th. In addition to continuing a variety of content-related activities, the short-term task of the museum is to move the museum’s collections to the depositories at the new Estonian National Museum. 

Tarvi Sits, the Undersecretary for Cultural Heritage at the Ministry of Culture, expressed his appreciate for the current director Rael Artel, under whose direction the museum has attracted attention for its strong and diverse programme. “The challenge for the museum in the near term is to speak to various target groups and find cooperation partners in order to organise exhibitions outside of the museum’s space. Equally important is keeping the everyday activities running smoothly, while ensuring the preservation of the collections by moving them from their current location, where they are at risk, to the new depositories at the Estonian National Museum (ERM),” said Sits.

Speaking about Signe Kivi, Sits emphasised her management experience and diverse and profound knowledge about the art field. Kivi added that thanks to her long-term participation in the Estonian art scene, she has a clear understanding of the prevailing expectations in the field.

“The Tartu Art Museum has a special place in our art landscape. I definitely plan to continue the exhibition activities, which have been revitalised in recent years, as well as the public and educational programmes. This means cooperating with the University of Tartu museums, ERM and the city museums, as well as with all the other art and memory institutions in Tartu.” said Kivi. She added that another important task is to conduct negotiations for the establishment of a museum foundation.

Signe Kivi also stressed the importance of Tartu’s traditional art legacy in planning the museum’s work. “We continue to have a large audience that appreciates classic art. Therefore, the tried and true Pallas style will continue to play an important role in our exhibitions,” she added. 

Signe Kivi graduated from the State Art Institute of the Estonian S.S.R. in 1980 with a degree in textile design. From 1988, she has been a faculty member in the same department. From 2005 to 2015, she was the rector of the Estonian Academy of Arts. She is a member of the Estonian Artists’ Association and has been its president from 1998 to 1999. Signe Kivi was Estonia’s Minister of Culture from 1999 to 2002.

Signe Kivi will assume her new position on June 26th. Rael Artel, the current director of the Tartu Art Museum, resigned her position of her own accord.


More information

Tarvi Sits

Undersecretary for Cultural Heritage, Ministry of Culture



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