TAB 2019

Curatorial Exhibition “Beauty Matters”

Beauty Matters

Exhibition is open:


  • Tue–Sun 11:00–18:00
  • Mon closed


Virtual Reality installations can be experienced only with an assisting guide on the following times:

Tue-Fri 15:00-18:00
Sat-Sun 12:00-15:00. 


Exhibition design: Yael Reisner with Barnaby Gunning

In celebrating beauty after some eight decades of denigration, the exhibition elevates the status of beauty and its role in exploring new architectural beauties. The result is newly designed habitation projects that focus on Tallinn but have global implications, creating a conduit for the experience of beauty. 

Great architecture emanates from the creative tension between the variables an architect opts to engage with, striving to reflect on the role of human judgment by sifting through ideas, tools and resources to achieve a result that is original, profound, economical, clear, surprising, sometimes ambiguous. The characteristics of beauty.

Nine exhibitors, three Estonian and six from around the world, have been chosen for their diverse palette of agendas and aesthetics; together they exhibit a pluralistic approach to the experience of beauty and demonstrate that beauty matters.

Exhibitors: Sou Fujimoto Architects, March Studio, Kadri Kerge, soma architecture, Yael Reisner and Barnaby Gunning, Space Popular, Elena Manferdini, Kadarik Tüür Architects, Paula Strunden, Arne Maasik, Indrek Must
Soundscape: Nathan Tulve, Jakob Tulve

Sou Fujimoto Architects

The Open Cave


The habitation unit is a new but primitive house. SFA’s segmentbecomes an open system that identifies the mass and the space, establishing new connections between inside and outside.It is a proposition for the habitation of tomorrow, whereby conventional floors and building envelope disintegrate into continuous open landscape. In this way, the floor becomes wall, the wall becomes ceiling, the ceiling becomes furniture, the furniture becomes architecture, and architecture becomes landscape. Consequently, the open cave has no specific predefined area.

Sou Fujimoto (Japan) was born in Hokkaido in 1971. After graduating from the Department of Architecture, Faculty of Engineering at Tokyo University, he established Sou Fujimoto Architects in 2000. He now works from offices in both Tokyo and Paris.

In 2013 he became the youngest architect to design the Serpentine Gallery Pavilion in London. He has since won numerous international competitions across Europe.

His notable works include; “Serpentine Gallery Pavilion 2013” (2013), “House NA” (2011), “Musashino Art University Museum & Library” (2010), “Final Wooden House”(2008), “House N” (2008) and many more.

Kadri Kerge

Beauty-Ful(l) Life


The project is designing new type of living space for special social condition – apartment for the modern binuclear family.  A complex geometry for interrelated spatial program, creating links between private, common and shared space. A therapeutic space helping to live more beauty-ful(l) life, supporting the family’s everyday needs and (complex) relationships with each other.

Kadri Kerge is an Estonian architect based in New York City, where she is designing large scale buildings, design strategies and master plans  across the world for NBBj Architects. She is running her private studio Ministry of Architecture with her sister Maris Kerge in Tallinn, Estonia and New York, focusing on residential buildings and interior design architectural projects in Estonia and NYC.

Prior to that she was working at Asymptote Architecture in New York, Coop Himmelb(l)au and Eichinger Offices in Vienna.

Atelier Manferdini

Wall Flower

Nature is a silent but powerful protagonist of Atelier Manferdini artwork for the Tallinn Architecture Biennale. Wall Flower challenges a notion of Nature as a classical source of inspiration for beauty and wants to put to forefront an expanded, hybrid notion of Nature that does not yield to clean judgments or bottom lines about what is living or non-living, organic or technological, true or synthetic. The floral landscapes become alive through the use of Augmented Reality and trigger the curiosity and the interaction both physical and visual of the visitors. Wall Flower is a landscape painting for the digital age: ever-shifting in relation to the viewer.

Elena Manferdini (USA) is an Italian engineer and architect based in Venice, California, where she is the principal and owner of Atelier Manferdini. She is the Graduate Programs Chair at the Southern California Institute of Architecture. She has over fifteen years of professional experience that span across architecture, art, design, and education. Her work received the prestigious 2016 Public Art North America award and is part of the permanent collections of SFMoMA and LACMA. In 2011 she was one of the recipients of the prestigious annual grants from the United States Artists (USA) in the category of architecture and design.

Space Popular

The Venn Room


The introduction of virtual portals in the home – such as the television, the computer or the smartphone – has had considerable consequences in our day to day but has left the architecture of the home pretty much untouched.
The Venn Room by Space Popular depicts a series of possible scenarios of cohabitation in which issues of integration, interface, exposure, overlap, representation, storage and ownership in the augmented future for our domestic environments are put into perspective through everyday narratives.

Lara Lesmes (Spain) and Fredrik Hellberg (Sweden), both graduates from the Architectural Association in London, founded Space Popular in Bangkok in 2013. Based in London since 2016, the practice works at multiple scales: from furniture and interior design to architecture, urbanism, and the design of virtual worlds. The duo has extensive teaching experience at INDA (Bangkok) and the Architectural Association and have lectured and participated as visiting critics internationally. Beyond their academic experience, Space Popular has ongoing and realised built projects and exhibitions in Europe and Asia.

Kadarik Tüür Architects

Utopian Tick  


Tick is an arachnid that latches upon warm-blooded animals. This parasite has attached itself to the beautiful modernist block. It is covered with sprayed insulation which has spread like an infection over the existing housing block. The installation is a happy reunion of at least 3 utopias – the utopia of modernist housing, the utopia of energy-efficient reconstruction and the utopia of vernacularity.

KTA (Estonia) was established in 2010 by two partners, Ott Kadarik and Mihkel Tüür, who have worked together since 2000. KTA is a progressive and contemporary practice that focuses on all aspects of architecture and design – including large scale urban planning, public and private buildings, interiors and individual objects. Our architecture is characterised by great dedication to detail and understanding of program and function. Through the use of modern technology we create unique and innovative architecture and design. KTA has collaborated with a number of professionals in architecture and adjacent fields.

SOMA Architecture

Temporal Environment


For soma architecture, design is a prognosis about future lives and realities. Buildings are never finished but reorganized, altered and transformed. If we observe the city from far distance in rapid motion we would get a completely different understanding of its nature: a living habitat that is neither monumental nor permanent. The installation by soma is an excerpt of an evolving structure that is overgrowing and transforming the abandoned Linnahall in Tallinn.

soma is an Austrian practice founded in 2007 by Stefan Rutzinger, Kristina Schinegger, Günther Weber and Martin Oberascher. Soma has been working on a wide range of international projects, from implementation of innovative cultural buildings to award winning competition entries, from urban master planning and social housing to exhibition design and installations. In addition to the Theme Pavilion for the Expo 2012 Yeosu in South Korea, completed projects include the extension for the Building Academy in Austria (2012) and the travelling Art Pavilion for the Salzburg Biennale (2011). Current projects under construction are a new residential quarter in the City of Salzburg and the Austrian headquarter for the German firm TECE. The team’s work has won numerous prizes in international competitions and has been featured in significant exhibitions such as the Venice Architecture Biennale 2010 and Archilab 2013. In 2014 soma was presented in a solo show at the Museum for Applied Arts in Vienna. Since 2017 soma is run by Stefan Rutzinger and Kristina Schinegger.

March Studio



This project is simultaneously an investigation into a 1:1 plywood box truss (the segment) and a 1:10 structural system for a tower (the whole). The work continues a wider body of research undertaken by March Studio where materials, technology, and structure are used to explore disorderly form in order to propose new opportunities and architectural typologies. In the case of Transoccupation, we propose a new, interchangeable residential tower which is more akin to a vertical village than a typical extruded Tower model.

March Studio (Australia) was founded in 2007 in Melbourne by architect Rodney Eggleston and graphic designer Anne-Laure Cavigneaux. Raised on technology and passionate about hand-made objects and traditional processes, their creative ambitions have given them the opportunity to work across the fields of residential, retail, hospitality, experiential design and community engagement. Within a few years, March Studio became a high profile, internationally published and award winning studio. March Studio has grown today as a collective of architects, designers and creators who focus is on realising projects with ingenuity and respect for locations, materials, processes and people.

Yael Reisner and Barnaby Gunning

Growing Habitats


Interweaving different kinds of growth from the integration of plant life to the formation of living spaces. Deliberately generous in volume, valuing continuity of space from the private and cozy, to the public. The flowering collars emerge from each of the pure-wool felt drape, and blur the boundary between exterior and interior. Planting is deeply integrated, from a hydroponic ‘magic garden’ to a naturally and artificially lit semi-external ‘potting shed’ for ‘grow your food’ garden.

Dr Yael Reisner combines her architectural practice with research, teaching and curatorial work. Committed to research-led projects focused on the experience of beauty, her public works include ‘Take My Hand, Rights and Weddings’ (Barcelona, 2014) and ‘In The Mirror’ (Beijing 2015).

Barnaby Gunning is an architect and coder. He designs houses, restaurants, furniture, public sculpture and apps. He was the architect of the world’s first complete house in Lego and undertook web based architectural activism with Google following the 2009 L’Aquila earthquake.

Reisner and Gunning share a studio in London where they collaborate on exhibition, experience and set design.

Paula Strunden

The Talking Trees of Tallinn

The VR Experience Talking Trees of Tallinn (in collaboration with Yael Reisner) is a location-based, mixed-reality display inviting the viewer to interact with six projects out of eight exhibited at the curatorial exhibition. Immerse yourself in the Open Cave by Sou Fujimoto, Transoccupation by March Studio, Beauty-Ful(l) Life by Kadri Kerge, Growing Habitats by Yael Reisner and Barnaby Gunning, Temporal Environment by soma architecture, and the Utopian Tick by KTA. Six mixed-reality peepholes triggered by “tactile objects” give virtual entry to six imaginary habitations and invite the viewer to engage with a new form of embodied architecture.



Paula Strunden is an architectural designer currently based in Amsterdam and London, as co-founder of Soft Bodies. She studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna and ENSAPM Paris before graduating from the Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL. With experience working for Archithese, Raumlabor and Herzog & de Meuron, Paula continuously explores the imaginary spatial potential within Virtual and Mixed Reality environments. As Associate of Store, Paula has led a series of VR workshops in London and abroad. She tutored at Whitechapel Gallery, Het Nieuwe Instituut and the Bartlett Summer School Programme and holds a teaching position at the Architectural Association. Her speculative Mixed Reality work has been exhibited at the Royal Academy of Arts, Open City Docs, Object Rotterdam and Frame Lab Amsterdam.

Arne Maasik

Birches, South Estonia


In 2000, Arne Maasik started to systematically photograph underbrush, and during seven years, the series named “Tangles” continually grew and formed an increasingly prominent part of this work. Based on what is being depicted, these underbrush pictures could be categorized as nature photos. Actually, Maasik is clearly detached from this tradition and controversial – destructive of the genre. /—/ He photographs nature like architectural photographers photograph buildings. /—/

Text by Peeter Laurits.


Arne Maasik is a photographer and an artist, whos work captures the unseen, both the metaphysical and the poetic, which he sees in urban environments as well as on their outskirts, in old houses and their underbellies. Maasik originally graduated in architecture, and has since become one of Estonia’s highest profile architectural photographers. He often engages in long-term projects that involve large-scale research and has had numerous solo exhibitions in Tallinn, Helsinki, Rome, Venice, Berlin, Moscow and elsewhere.


Text by Peeter Laurits

Nathan & Jakob Tulve

Exhibiton soundscape


You’re inhabiting a cocoon in a transitional area between an extreme woodland and a crispy urban intersection. You consider closing your eyes and trying to picture the world only by what you hear around you. A buzzing drone morphing into the scraping flaps of a dragonfly. Fresh scent of the recent rain sweeping over the panorama of an organic cityscape. Everyday sounds rising like a fog above the terrain. And the noise of a traffic jam slowly fading into oblivion. An autonomous delivery robot crossing the road only to find beauty in it all.


Jakob and Nathan are audiovisual artists whose work explores early and classical music, as well as intellectual dance music. They are interested in bringing together and combining contrasting ideas to create hyper-realistic sound narratives. They both have backgrounds in graphic design and work on developing their solo practices, under their respective aliases Skyler and Metabora, while often collaborating with one another and other artists.