Riin Kaljurand

Location: Dublin

Purchase information: riinkaljurand@gmail.com

Artist’s Statement

Riin Kaljurand

My current painting practice has been very much influenced by my geopolitical origins. I was born in 1979, in the former Estonian Soviet Socialist Republic, then part of the Soviet Union, an era which has always fascinated me with its paradoxes and peculiarities.

Much of my imagery is directly taken from Soviet Estonia’s women’s magazine ‘Soviet Woman’. As Judith Butler says: ‘Masculine and feminine roles are not biologically fixed but socially constructed.’ ‘Soviet Woman’ created images of femininity according to the communist ideology of work – women as hard working comrades of Soviet society. Sections of the magazine were dedicated to teaching women skills, that were considered useful, like cooking, health and beauty, and hand-crafting skills like crocheting, knitting, sowing, etc. It even included indispensable life skills like raising children.

The source material I work from dates from 1955 to the 1980s; I usually select photographs which feature women hard at work in traditionally ‘masculine’ milieus like farms, factories and construction sites. I abstract the imagery from the original photograph to create simplified shapes which emphasise the workers and the act of working, not the work being produced.

My paintings are collaged from dried layers of acrylic or household paint, which I manipulate at different stages of drying – by scraping, folding, cutting, drawing into and building up. My work is distinguished by a palpable use of surface textures cast as paint. I often manipulate the context of mass-produced materials and convert them into figurative artworks. I also use cosmetic items to make marks into paint. The paint in this way becomes the surface as well as the medium. I often try to make the paint look like some other material, e.g., wool, wood or stone – frequently as a playful response to the materials represented in the source photographs. Some of my paintings are built up by collaborating collage techniques and traditional handcraft, such as basket weaving, knitting and crocheting (jobs that women were required to do, according to the social idea of femininity constructed by the magazine ‘Soviet Woman’).

My biggest influence through out my art practice is contemporary and traditional ceramics. That is the reason; I use gold and silver in my works. In contemporary and traditional ceramics usage of silver and gold is often a must, but in painting usage of silver or gold is not that common.

I also use mass-produced tools, considered traditionally feminine, like icing nozzles and hair combs to create my paintings. To give my work a three-dimensional sculptural form, I make acetate structures by vacuum forming traditionally considered feminine objects like combs, brushes, cosmetic items, polishers, files, toys etc. Then I fill these forms with paint and when paint has dried, I remove these sculptural paint objects from acetate structures and incorporate them into my paintings. I generally choose to hang the paintings further from the wall to emphasize their object-like format.


Education and Training

2017-2019 National College of Art and Design, Dublin, Ireland, Master of Fine Art, Painting

2011-2015 National College of Art and Design (NCAD) Dubli, BA (Hons) Fine Art Painting

Thesis Research: ‘Cover Girls and Working Women- construction of ‘Femininity’ in Soviet Estonia’ – Research thesis into the construction of femininity in Soviet Estonia’s woman’s magazine ‘Soviet Woman’.

2010-2011 Portfolio course, National College of Art and Design, Dublin

1986-1990 Parnu Fine Art School, Parnu, Estonia


Selected Group Exhibitions

Dates 14th – 16th of May 2012

Location National College of Art and Design

Title of exhibition First Year Studies End of Year Show


Dates 23th – 29th of May 2013

Location Light House Cinema, Smithfield

Title of exhibition Kiln Paint


Date 16th of January 2014

Location ‘Pop Up Gallery’, Bray to Tara Street Dart service, Dublin

Title of exhibition #dArt


Dates 12th – 18th of May 2014

Location Hendrons Collider

Title of exhibition 3


Date 31st of October 2014

Location ‘Pop up Exhibition’, Project Space, National College of Art and Design, Dublin

Title of Exhibition We’re Painters not Poster Makers


Date 12th – 21st of June 2015

Location National College of Art and Design, Dublin

Title of Exhibition Degree Show


Date 16th of June 2015

Location Art Slant.com

Title of Exhibition 3rd Showcase Winner


Date 28th – 30th August 2015

Location RDS Concert Hall, Dublin, Ireland

Title of Exhibition Student Award Show


Date 9th – 11th August 2015

Location RDS Concert Hall, Dublin, Ireland

Title of Exhibition ‘Discover Ireland Dublin Horse Show’


Date 21th – 24th August 2015

Location MART Project Space, Dublin, Ireland

Title of Exhibition ‘Saw Dust’


Date 10th – 30th September 2015

Location Dublin, Ireland, Lighthouse Cinema, Smithfield, Dublin 7

Title of Exhibition ‘SCOOP Art Auction and Exhibition’


Juried Exhibition: Date 25th September – 23rd October, 2015

Location USA, Cincinnati, Ohio

Title of Exhibition ‘Season 12 FRESH PAINT Exhibition’


Date 4th March – 8th April 2016

Location Wexford, Ireland, Presenation Arts Centre

Title of Exhibition ‘Behind the Margin’


Date 10th – 13th of March 2016

Location Dublin, Ireland, The Fumbally Exchange

Title of Exhibition ‘Perennial’


Juried exhibition: Date 22 March – 11 June 2016

Location Royal Hibernian Academy (RHA) Gallery

Title of Exhibition Juried ‘186th RHA Annual Exhibition’


Date 28th April – 1st May

Location USA, Los Angeles, Paloma Studios

Title of Exhibition ‘Borderlands’

Curator: Kimberly Corday


Date 21st May

Location Facebook, Virtual Exhibition, USA, San Francisco, Gallery 011

Title of Exhibition ‘Impossible Possibilities’


Date 25th June – 17th July 2016 (invited to participate)

Location Denmark, Copenhagen, Oxholm Galleri

Title of the Exhibition ‘Fernisering: SOLO – “POV” af Olav Mathisen and sommerudstilling’


Date 8th July – 10th August (invited to pariticipate)

Location, Ireland, Dublin, The Molesworth Gallery

Title of the Exhibition ‘Vains // Small ….. far away’

Curators: Davey Moore and Peter Pendergast


Date 9th July – 31st August 2016 (Invited to participate)

Location USA, California, Santa Monica, Craig Krull Gallery

Title of the Exhibition ‘Paint is a Thing’

Curator: Director of Craig Krull Gallery Beth Parker


Date 19th Nov – 26th November

Location, Facebook, Virtual Exhibition, USA, San Francisco, 011 Gallery

Title of Exhibition ‘Nowhere and Everywhere’


Date 30thNov – 16th January 2017

Location, Estonia, Parnu, Parnu City Gallery

Title of Exhibition ‘Parnu Annual Art Exhibition’

Selected Group Exhibitions 2017

Date 1st January – 31st January

Location, New York, United Stated of America, Slayer Gallery

Title of Exhibition “No History”


Date 10th – 31st January

Location, New York, United States of America, The Painting Center Online Gallery

Title of Exhibition “Art File”


Date 11th – 16th May

Location, Dublin, Ireland, NCAD (National College of Art and Design) Gallery

Title of Exhibition ‘Bare Magazine’ Issue two launch


Selected Solo exhibitions

Date 2017

Location RHA Ashford Gallery , Dublin, Ireland

Title of the Exhibition ‘Celebration of Worker!’

Curator: Ruth Carroll

Art Fairs

Rotterdam Contemporary Art Fair

Date 8th – 12th February 2017

Location World Trade Centre, Rotterdam, Netherlands

with Project2.0/Gallery The Hague, Netherlands



Date 2th – 5th July 2017

Location, Killorglin, County Kerry, Ireland


2015 Art Slant Prize,3rd ‘Showcase Winner’. Art Slant.com, June 2015

RDS Concert Hall, Discover Ireland Dublin Horse Show, 2015

RDS Concert Hall, Student Award Show, 2015

RDS Concert Hall, Student Art Awards, Monster Truck Studio Award, July 28, 2015

2015 Art Slant Prize, 5th ‘Showcase Winner’. Art Slant.com, June 2015

2016 Working artist Grant/Purchase Award for the month of February

2016 Artist Project Initative Painting and Drawing Award Finalist 2015


2015 Studio residency, MART Project Space, Dublin, Ireland, June – August

2017, Cill Rialig Artist Residency, County Kerry, Ireland, 7th – 15th January


2015, ‘Art’s New Wave’, Irish Arts Review,  Autumn Issue

2015,  The Scoop Art Cook Book,

2015, ‘Fresh Paint Magazine’, October Issue

2015, ‘Aye Magazine’, November online Issue

2015, tn2, October Online Issue, interview

2015, Archive Collective Magazine, December Online Issue

2015, Floorr Magazine. January Online Issue, interview

2016,  July, ‘ Studio Visit Magazine’, Volume 34 USA

2016 August, ‘The International Painting Annual (INPA6)’, Manifest publication, Ohio, USA

2016 October, ‘Average Art’, Volume 3, UK

2017 January, ‘Contemporary Art Curator’ online Magazine

2017 April, ‘Art Maze Magazine’, Issue 2

2017 May, ‘Bare Magazine’, Issue 2


Susan Butler, ‘Cheat Sheet: Summer group shows (and what curators are writing about them), Two Coats of Paint, ‘Two Coats of Paint Blog’,July 19, 2016

Print Media

Deborah Stambler, “Fold, Paint, Display – Two New Artists at Bergamont Station,” The Huffington Post, July 6, 2016

Aidan Dunne, “The tricky ethics of painting human suffering,” The Irish Times, July 27, 2016


 The Cucumbers – Office of Public Works (OPW) Irish State art Collection (2016), Ireland

Affiliations and Memberships

 Visual Artists Ireland

Current Representation: PotatoMike, Online Gallery, potatomike.com


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