The Institute of Art History and Visual Culture (in Estonian KVI) is the only research institute in art history (Kunstwissenschaft) in Estonia, and a leading one in the Baltic States, covering a wide range of fields of study, from the medieval period to contemporary art. The Institute was founded in 1992 as the Institute of Art History of the Tallinn Art University.

The Institute of Art History and Visual Culture serves both as a research and teaching institution, conducting major research projects in art history and providing education in all three academic levels.

The professors and faculty members in our Institute are top specialists in their fields and recognized experts; our graduates include Estonia’s leading younger generation curators, critics and art theoreticians. The Institute’s curriculum combines historical and object-centred approaches to art with excellent knowledge of theoretical viewpoints. Visual culture studies explore the pictorial and spatial environment, the connections between them, and their functioning society. The curriculum is supplemented by study trips and practical training.

The Institute’s MA programme offers three areas of specialization: Art History and Visual Culture StudiesMuseology or Curatorial Studies. The goal of the doctoral programme is to prepare high-level professionals who are able to work both as teaching or research staff members in the academic sphere and as top-level specialists outside it.

The aim of the Institute of Art History and Visual Culture is to offer a diverse, innovative and inspirational environment for study and research. Training in the speciality is supported by research conducted in the Institute, our research projects, conferences and publications.

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Watch our Vimeo channel and lectures on EKA TV.

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News and events

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Estonian MA students in visual culture and its preservation regathered for a joint seminar

A transdisciplinary seminar bringing together MA students from Estonian universities dealing with art history, visual culture, curating, conservation, museum and archival studies was held for the second time (this first one was in fall 2019) on 10th–11th January 2022 in Purdi manor. Six Estonian university chairs were represented, the Estonian Academy of Arts by its curricula of Art ...
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Helena Tääker at Vent Space

The first solo exhibition of the artist Helena Tääker “Surgery of the Soul” will be opened in Vent Space on November 28 at 6 pm. The curator of the exhibition is Ketlin Käpp.  The exhibition reflects artist Helena Tääker’s self searching and vision of somatic experience in space. Tääker is fascinated by human body and its textures, approaching them through surrealistic viewpoint. The artist ...
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Dan Karlholm’s lecture “The Climate of Art History”

On November 25th at 5.30 pm, Dan Karlholm from Södertörn University will give a lecture “The Climate of Art History” at the Estonian Academy of Arts (room A-501). Drawing on Dipesh Chakrabarty’s classic essay “The Climate of History”, where he argues that world history and earth history must be seen as conjoined histories, the lecture discusses art history through the lens of climate change, ...

PhD Thesis Defence of Greta Koppel

Greta Koppel, PhD student of the Estonian Academy of Arts, curriculum of Art History and Visual Culture, will defend her thesis „Farewell to Connoisseurship? The Work of Art in the Focus of Art Historical Research” („Hüvasti, konossöörlus? Kunstiteos kui kunstiajaloolise uurimise kese“) on 10th of December 2021 at 15.00 at Põhja pst 7, room A501. Limited number of audience can participate ...
Photo by Margarita Ogoļceva

Webinar “Environmentalising Baltic Art Histories”

Online-discussion “Environmentalising Baltic Art Histories: Experience from Research and Curatorship” on 2 November at 5.30-7.30 PM EEST Participants: Bart Pushaw, Inga Lace, Eda Tuulberg, Nomeda and Gediminas Urbanis, Maja and Reuben Fowkes Moderators: Ieva Astahovska, Linda Kaljundi The discussion invites researchers and curators to talk about their experiences of writing and curating ...
Ruth Sargent Noyes

Ruth Sargent Noyes’ Lecture

On Thursday, October 28th at 4pm, Ruth Sargent Noyes will give an open lecture “Globalizing art histories of North-eastern Europe before modernity: a view from the Baltic” as part of the Open Lectures’ series of the Institute of Art History and Visual Culture of the Estonian Academy of Arts. Room: A-101 Through a series of queries and micro-historical case studies, Dr. Noyes takes up the ...
Webinar Post-Cold War Heritages

Webinar: Working with the Post-Cold War Heritages

Online discussion “Working with the Post-Cold War Heritages in the Baltics and Beyond” The discussion will take place on Facebook Participants: Eglė Rindzevičiūtė, Hilkka Hiiop, Kati Lindström, Raitis Šmits, Linara Dovydaitytė, Ele Carpenter Moderators: Ieva Astahovska, Linda Kaljundi The visible traces of the Soviet period in the Baltic landscapes include diverse and numerous technologically ...

Exhibition “Tierras malas” in Vaal Gallery

As a part of Tallinn Photomonth The Institute of Art History and Visual Culture’s Research Secretary and lecturer, Annika Toots, is curating the exhibition “Tierras malas”, which examines the representation of landscape in photography, emphasizing two aspects related to the landscape. Artists: Bleda y Rosa (ES), Aap Tepper (EE), Paco Ulman (EE), Dovilė Dagienė (LT) First of all, the ...