Information Centre of Finno-Ugric Peoples

30 Press release
21 July 2001

Press releases


See also:

Etnofutu 4 Will Bring Ethnofuturists from the East and the West to Estonia

On Wednesday, July 25, the Estonian university town of Tartu will host the Etnofutu 4 -- a conference of young Finno-Ugrian people of art in ethnofuturism. The event will be more extensive, cover a wider range of topics, and with more participants than at the earlier conferences. There will be over 100 guests from Estonia, Russia’s Finno-Ugric regions, Finland, Hungary, Great Britain, Canada and Latvia. This year, reports and discussions will be centred on the figure of a shaman: the main subjects will be religion, poetry, music, symbols and their meanings.

The conference will be opened July 25 at 2 p.m. in Tartu at the Estonian National Museum. There first session will also be held there, with reports on Finno-Ugric traditional religions and music, as well as the development and spread of ethnofuturism among Finno-Ugric peoples. On the second day, reports will be focused on the essence of ethnofuturism and its prospects, symbols and sign systems at the Finno-Ugric peoples, and the literature of ethnofuturism.

The conference will then move from Tartu to Viljandi. Seminars will be held on marks and semiotics (July 27), on music and comics (July 28), and on education of children to carry, in the modern times, the traditional culture and beliefs of their homelands (July 29).

There will be also a large cultural programme. In Tartu, a folklore and poetry soiree will be held. The Viljandi Folk Music Festival has already included into its programme the performances by guest actors at the Ugric Ethnofuturist Stage. An ethnofuturist art exhibition will be open in the Viljandi theatre Ugala during the conference, with paintings by Pavel Mikushev from Komi and Alexander Ivanov from Mari El (1964-2001), and an installation by Peeter Sepp from Estonia. A happening named Oti-Tati, Ottsy-Tattsy (Here and There, Hither and Thither) will be staged by Kuchyran Yuri from Udmurtia. The Mountain Mari Drama Theatre will stage the show The Human’s Journey Through Life.

Tallinn, the capital of Estonia, there will be only one event -- the personal In exhibition named Jester With a Whistle by Erzyan painter Yuri Dyrin.

The notion of ethnofuturism was first introduced in 1989 by Estonian writer and poet Karl Martin Sinijärv. Its idea is to blend the opposites in culture by integrating the native and ancient with the universal and modern Ethnofuturism is the only internationally spread novel art style that originates from Estonia.

The first Finno-Ugric conference on ethnofuturism was in Tartu in 1994, the second (1998) was in Izhevsk in Udmurtia, and the third (1999) was in Tartu. After the 1998 conference this art style started spreading to the north and to the east from Estonia. In Udmurtia, quite a few dissertation papers have already been defended on ethnofuturism. Ethnofuturist trends in art have emerged among non-Finno-Ugric peoples as well, for example in Chuvashia. In Finland, the central figure in the growing ethnofuturist movement is Kari Sallamaa, professor of Oulu University.

The 4th conference on ethnofuturism is organised by the Kindred Peoples Centre and the Information Centre of Finno-Ugric Peoples (branches of the Fenno-Ugria Foundation), Viljandi Folk Music Festival, Viljandi College of Culture, Council of Worshippers of Tara And the Earth, and Hungarian Institute. Support is provided by the Estonian Centre of Modern Art (Open Society Culture Link Program of the Soros Foundations), Kindred Peoples Programme, Cultural Endowment Of Estonia, British Council, the town of Tartu, and Finnish Institute.

The press conference will be held on Friday, July 27, at 4 p.m. at the theatre Ugala in Viljandi. Andres Heinapuu, the main organiser of the event, will speak about the Viljandi part of the Etnofutu 4 and about ethnofuturism in general. Kauksi Ülle will speak about The Ugric Ethnofuturist Stage. Questions will be answered by Prof. Kari Sallamaa (the Oulu University), Viktor Shibanov (senior lecturer, the Udmurt University) and other leaders of ethnofuturism.

Kirsti Ruul