The retrospective exhibition passes through the artistic career of one of the most important Estonian sculptors, giving a comprehensive overview Mikoff’s development as an artist, her aesthetic convictions and witty worldview. Mikoff’s show conjointly keeps on with Tartu Art Museum’s tradition of presenting legendary and respected female artists. With Mikoff’s works and activities as a background the exhibition draws special attention to sculpture and monumental art in public space which has been a hot topic in Estonian recent history.
Mare Mikoff (born in 1941 in Tallinn) has been active as a sculptor since the beginning of the 1970s. She studied sculpture in the Estonian State Art Institute between 1961 to 1971 and for a while history in Tartu University (1962–1964). Mikoff has been a freelance artist most of her life, though she has also worked as a restorer of medieval coats-of-arms, as an artistic director of the ARS monumental sculpture studio and as a Chief Artist of Tallinn City Government. Since 1997 she has been a teacher of sculpture in the Estonian Academy of Arts and since 2007 a teacher in the University of Tartu’s Viljandi Culture Academy. The exhibition includes artist’s top works spanning from five decades, many of which are established in the Estonian art history. In addition to her well-known portrait busts of public figures, experimental and somewhat forgotten installations from the 1990s and latest politically charged installations will be exhibited.