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At the solo exhibition THE BOUNDS OF BOUNDARIES, Maarja Niinemägi presents sculptural rings that extensively combine materials and technologies, such as titanium, buffalo horn, ebony, engraving, riveting, and anodizing. The creation of large-scale abstract jewellery is a creative practice that plays with the boundaries of design and jewellery art – a journey the artist started already in 2005. Maarja Niinemägi writes:

“I seek a shape that does not directly allude to the ring, a form distinct from the conventional. A ring could be a piece of art even when not worn on a finger.

 Unaware of the dimensions of the jewellery piece while looking at a photo of it, a person may be surprised by its actual size in real life. I aim to design these rings playfully keeping in mind the function of a ring but evading the limits of its traditional form. 

My desire is to develop and discover nuances inside the shapes forming the rings. The rings can be worn and viewed as independent objects, connecting small details and designs – creating philosophical landscapes. On each ring a small story sets a scene.”

The exhibition is funded with the help of Estonian Cultural Endowment.

Maarja Niinemägi is a jewellery artist and designer based in Tartu. She has participated in exhibitions since 1997, leading her to various parts of the world, including Europe, China, America, and Australia. Niinemägi obtained her education in jewellery art from the Estonian Academy of Arts, where she earned her master’s degree in arts with honours in 2008. As an exchange student and intern in Idar-Oberstein, Germany, she also acquired skills in gemstone engraving. Her works are part of the collection of the Estonian Museum of Applied Art and Design, the Alice and Louis Koch Ring Collection in Switzerland, and other private collections in Estonia and abroad. Maarja Niinemägi has been a member of the Estonian Artists’ Association since 2011 and the Estonian Association of Designers since 2014.

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On January 19, Friday at 18:00, solo-exhibitions of artists Into Niilo and Kadi Kübarsepp will be opened on the WINDOWS of A-Galerii.

Into Niilo 


With their second solo exhibition in A-Galerii Into Niilo reflects on war propaganda and the concept of Newspeak portrayed in George Orwell’s politically critical dystopian novel 1984. The emigrated artist once based in Moscow now residing in Antwerp relates the novel with nowadays politics in the world and in particular with it in Russia. The project |1984| was made as a part of the MASieraad Master’s program, led by some of the most famous jewellery artists such as Ted Noten and Ruudt Peters.

The artwork combines objects – blocks, creating a unique puzzle. The blocks depicting words with opposite meanings pair up. They go together as a word with a bad connotation fits into the positive space of the other block and a word with a good undertone covers the first block’s positive space with its void. The artist developed a custom font so these materialized words would combine with each other. There are 2 sets of 4 pairs of these objects, either 3D printed with SLA or CNC cut into beech wood. 

During the creative research Niilo understood that the pieces were driven by a quotation from the book 1984. In Orwell’s novel its fictional evil government states absurdly with the intent of brainwashing citizens that “War is peace, freedom is slavery, ignorance is strength.”

The gallery shares the artists Into Niilo’s statement as follows:

Some people say “life before 24th of February and after”. I share this chronology. I hardly can recall the life before it, but I remember my feelings clearly after the full blown war against Ukraine had started: searing pain, despair and guilt because of a wrongful, terrible mistake.

Propaganda in Russia had never been shy, but by now I feel completely dumbfounded. A full swing war is called a “special operation”, an unprovoked attack is called “a rightful defense.” Propaganda states that black is white and feeds people’s minds with shit. After the first weeks of the atrocities in official news, I couldn’t keep it to myself. I insist on my right to speak out about it.

I speak about propaganda, freedom of speech and fear because I want to be heard that yes, I am Russian, but

Russian ≠ state 

Russian ≠ Putin

I can’t speak on behalf of the majority but I can speak on my behalf.

So, on my behalf:

Stop the war. 

Release all political prisoners.

Russia will be free.

Kadi Kübarsepp

Α & Ώ

I wanted to talk about the beginning, the unfolding of all things, and the path ahead, along with the reasons for my outset. The length and destination of our journey remain unknown. We move forward. – KADI KÜBARSEPP

Kadi Kübarsepp is an Estonian jewellery artist known for her powerful and at times brutalist way of handling materials. She obtained her master’s degree from the Estonian Academy of Arts in 2011 and has been participating in exhibitions since 2003. Kübarsepp is particularly fascinated by the subjectivity of wearability questioned in contemporary jewellery art. Creating mainly sculptural performative pieces, she has been strongly influenced by the New Jewellery movement of the 80s, which, in a revolutionary spirit, liberated jewellery from the burdens of its historical materials, forms, and sizes. She is one of the 65 shareholders of A-Galerii, a member of the Estonian Association of Metal Artists, and of the Estonian Artists’ Association.

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Mourning Cloak Butterfly wakes up early from its winter slumber, sleeps deep through midsummer, and remains awake for a long time in autumn.

Already in early childhood Ülle encountered the miraculous Mourning Cloak Butterfly.

The elderly paid attention to the butterfly as well.

The child could not yet grasp the meaning of its name, as only a delicate shadow was cast by it on the winged beauty.

Emotions and knowledge attached with time passing.

Gratitude to the dear departed ones remains.

The dark side of earthly beings, their envy and greed, are grief-worthy, not the dread before the unknown light. In this world, the Mourning Cloak Butterfly crosses forests and seas, luxuriates in the sun on a blooming meadow, and sucks up the juice and time given to it. With the Universe’s kind permission, journeys through the warmth of summer and the cold winter. Circling in a never ending pursuit of happiness.

The sun caresses people because they are so beautiful and kind.

Dear companions choose between light and shadow.

With the arrival of winter, the Milky Way in the sky, one can travel along it.

And people are so beautiful and kind… Hope remains.


Ülle Voosalu’s exhibition MOURNING CLOAK BUTTERFLY celebrates the 70th anniversary of the jewelry artist from Tartu, Estonia. Voosalu graduated from the Estonian Academy of Arts from the metalworking department in 1980 and soon after began exhibiting in 1981. She has worked as an artist at Tartu ARS and as a lecturer at Pallas University of Applied Sciences. Since 2001, she has been working as a freelance jewelry artist. Voosalu is a member of the Estonian Artists’ Association. The artist creates jewelry in an outstanding author’s technique, combining silver wire and gemstones into variously structured clusters. Her jewelry embodies wild joy of life and love for the beauty of nature. She crafts her pieces with the best wishes for the wearer.

The exhibition is supported by the Cultural Endowment of Estonia.

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The Czech word ŽOUŽELENÍ encapsulates the immersive, subjective experience of bliss and enjoyment evoked by sensory stimuli during interaction. It happens as imagination takes flight – runs wild, and surprises await around every corner. 

Lexovas oddly familiar interactive pieces are here to brighten up even the dullest of days, calling back every inner child to start playing again. ŽOUŽELENÍ offers an experience that’s anything but boring. It embraces the unexpected, and entertaining.

Barbora Lexová is the fourth-generation artist in her family. While specializing in jewellery, she embraces a versatile approach, unbounded by specific media or sizes. Influenced by the ASMR phenomenon, she navigates between softness and the peculiar, alongside an attraction to semi-fictional creatures. Lexova obtained her bachelor’s degree at the Academy of Arts Architecture & Design in Prague and completed her master’s at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp. Last year, she deepened her understanding of contemporary jewellery through an internship at Galeria Reverso.




Have you ever spent an entire day watching clouds?

Not at all?

As a child?

Can’t remember?

Cloud gazing can be done both on clear skies and under uniformly gray skies. All you need to do is stop by the windows of A-Gallery facing Pikk Street. The only downside is the constant stillness of the clouds there. But me, I managed to see their formation –  initially a lazy calm, later increasingly nervous movement and then all their unexpected changes.

What would life be without clouds! – JÜRI ROOSA

Jüri Roosa (1964) is an Estonian metal artist who began his professional journey in 1994. This year marks both his 60th and 30th anniversaries. Roosa introduces himself in a colorful manner: “From 1984 to 2004, I was a rock musician, a bass guitarist (ed. Gunnar Graps’s Group, Magnetic Band, Vanemõde, among others). Currently, I mainly operate in the Fe gallery. I work with both new and recycled steel, copper, aluminum, and other materials. I wear glasses and am almost bald.” The artist’s positivity and ironic sense of humor radiate through his playful depictions of animals and nature. In contrast to their naivety one can imagine the metal whining under a shear cutter, and see sparks flash during the making of.

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A shirt from a lover

A gift from a friend

A few stitches from an other

A path without an end …

Decaeon has come to stay.

“Never again!” she swore as she disappeared into the waves.

NEVER AFTER – an installation about an endless winter. 

The exhibition consists of jewelry and objects inspired by decorative techniques from the Mediterranean. Rich colors and the decadent charm of the abundance of material reflect the desire for eternal life: suffocating and charming at the same time, like the bittersweet love from fairy tales …as much a balm as a poison.

In these works, curses and eternal love are intertwined, sharing a glimpse into a drowning world where memories of better days are all there is.


Pilvi Tammoja is an Estonian interdisciplinary artist. She has a bachelor’s degree in fashion design and a master’s degree in jewellry art (cum laude) from the Estonian Academy of Arts. At the core of Tammoja’s opulent, space-burying installations are masterfully crafted, detailed works whose materials vary from silk thread to cast iron.

The exhibition is supported by the Cultural Endowment of Estonia.

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TRANSMISSION, as a term, signifies the act of transferring: in practice, it refers to the conveyance of force, energy, and control. It also encompasses the transfer of thoughts and ideas, from one entity to another. Thus, every belief encompasses transmission, an intelligent organizing energy that can catalyze change.

The title TRANSMISSION in this exhibition’s context arbitrarily interprets the English term and emphasizes on the part ‘mission,’ highlighting purpose-driven and responsible action.

Memory is selective; objects retain and aid in our recollection. Jewellery is remembered, and through it, people and time. Throughout history, jewellery has been a carrier of memory. With this focus, we turn our gaze to a time when the entire art scene in Estonia was undergoing significant changes. Figuratively speaking, it was a time when doors were closing and opening—some slammed shut with a bang, others were gently kicked wide, all with a touch of arrogance and sincere enthusiasm.

The TRANSMISSION exhibition evokes a period from 30 years ago. On May 10, 1994, in the premises of the present-day HOP Gallery of the Estonian Artists’ Union, situated at Hobusepea 2, a distinctive gallery devoted to art jewellery was inaugurated through the financial backing and collaborative effort of 33 artists. The core of this exhibition consists of the works of these artists from the 1990s. Despite the relatively homogeneous closed learning and development environment, their jewellery creations were explorative and distinctive. Among them are artists who have since passed away, but fortunately, many talented new artists have emerged. Do we also find influences and traces of the 1990s in the works of these younger creators—contemporary ideas intermingling with those from the past? What has been added over time, and what has been lost? The curators do not deny that, in compiling the exhibition, they sought similarities and kinship rather than conflicts, with a hidden desire to witness transmissions and inspirations stemming from the pivotal jewelry art of that era.

The exhibition aims to pay homage to the pioneers, to all fellow travelers, and extends wishes of strength to those continuing the mission of A-Galerii. Today is tomorrow’s yesterday.

Exhibition curators: Tiina Käesel and Maria Valdma-Härm

Exhibition design: Maria Valdma-Härm

Graphic design: Rasmus Lukas

The exhibition features video clips from the ERR archive: “Estonian Jewellery” (parts 1 and 3, year 1990), director Tiina Pork, consultant Tiina Käesel.

The exhibition is supported by the Estonian Cultural Endowment.

Thanks to: Estonian Museum of Applied Art and Design and Ketli Tiitsar.

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Erle Nemvalts, Merilin Pedastsaar



Through generations, fairytales have been reservoirs of dreams, hopes, and fantasies. Millions of women have shaped their psychosexual self-image through these tales – what behavior is expected of them, what they are capable of, how much recognition they deserve, and in what shape this recognition should come in. Unfortunately, the romantic ideal depicted in fairytales is difficult to fit into reality. How to find a balance between the longing for a companion, the fear of loneliness, and the desire for independence? Love is the answer, but as you seek for the answer…

Erle Nemvalts (1991) is an Estonian jewelry artist. Her creative practice focuses primarily on human behavioral patterns and characteristics. In her work, the artist often employs contrasting symbols and materials, simultaneously expressing lightness and heaviness, hope and despair. Nemvalts’ work has been exhibited in numerous exhibitions in Estonia, Portugal, Germany, France, Belgium, the United States, the Netherlands, and Hungary. In 2019, Nemvalts was awarded the Young Jewelry Fund’s Special Scholarship, and in 2023, she received the Marzee Gallery’s Graduates Exhibition Prize.

The exhibition is supported by the Estonian Cultural Endowment.



Flow – it is the manifestation of naturalness, of one’s most natural quality (the healing power of medicinal herbs, natural patina on metal). Taoists say that one does not achieve naturalness by striving upwards, but rather by going in the opposite direction – descending.

Patina is a thin oxide layer formed on the surface of metal over time, resulting from exposure to elements in the environment. For example, iron forms its natural patina, known as rust, when reacting with oxygen and moisture in the air.

The exhibition FLOW presents abstract paintings by Merilin Pedastsaar, executed on brass and steel. Techniques to achieve that include laser cutting, etching, casting, and chemical coloring known as patinating of metals. The history of metal coloring dates back thousands of years and has served religious, practical, and decorative purposes. Patination became more widely recognized as an art form in the 19th century. Pedastsaar says: “Coloring metals requires concentration – precise adherence to the patina recipe, but also patience and letting go. Once the work is done, step back! Much of the final result is unpredictable, one must trust life and give the metal a chance. Colors are in constant movement – emerging and fading, while covering each other. For me this process of flowing together with patina has been equally stunning and enjoyable, a collaboration, which could be summarized with the teaching of Laozi: Act without action.”

Merilin Pedastsaar (1989), known by the artist name MERI, is a metal artist, creative director, and galvanizer in her company Ehemeri. In 2014, she obtained a bachelor’s degree from the Estonian Academy of Arts, and the same year she was awarded the Roman Tavast Young Jewellery Artist Prize. Pedastsaar furthered her studies in Sweden, as an exchange student at the University of Gothenburg’s Faculty of Design and Craft and as an intern in Christer and Lena Bergestad Jonsson’s studio, Jungfruhuset. From 2015 to 2020, she worked as a visiting lecturer at the Viljandi Culture Academy, teaching courses on galvanizing (galvanoplasty, gold and silver-plating, patination, metal etching, and anodizing).