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Join us for a special in gallery talk & conversation on Self-Determination: A Global Perspective led by Seán Kissane (IMMA Curator) with Mart Kuldkepp, Professor of Estonian and Nordic History (UCL).

Exploring comparative art histories of emerging nation states in early 20th Century, we hear Mart Kuldkepp’s perspective on the parallels and differences between Ireland, Estonia and other states that gained or failed to gain independence in 1914-1920.

Reflecting on questions of national self-determination and is relationship to art, this talk offers comparative viewpoints on the various political, cultural, and artistic tenets associated with revolutionary events during the First World War and its aftermath. Themes of identity, activism, regionalism and gender are amongst the topics to be explored, giving insight and appreciation into the aesthetics, styles and artistic concerns that arise during the collapse of old empires and establishment of new statehood.

This talk is kindly supported by the Embassy of Estonia in Dublin and is programmed in association with KUMU Art Museum.

About Speakers

Mart Kuldkepp

Professor of Estonian and Nordic History, University College London.
Mart Kuldkepp is Professor of Estonian and Nordic History at University College London (UCL). In 2024, he is also visiting professor at Department of History, University of Tartu. His areas of research include the history of Estonia and the Baltic Sea Region in the early 20th century – especially the history of Baltic-Scandinavian relations – and the self-determination of stateless nationalities during the First World War. In February 2024, he published a monograph on the history of the idea of Estonia’s Nordicness and the origins of the Estonian nation state. Currently, he is finishing the manuscript of a short history of Scandinavia. He is also a regularly contributing writer to the largest Estonian daily, Postimees, and a frequent commentator on foreign and security policy issues in Estonian and international media.

Seán Kissane

Seán Kissane is Curator of Exhibitions at the Irish Museum of Modern Art (IMMA), Dublin. He curates deeply researched exhibitions focused on the work of female and queer artists whose work has been critically neglected. These projects have included major touring exhibitions such as the retrospectives for Derek Jarman, Leonora Carrington, and Mary Swanzy. In 2016 he presented the critically acclaimed ‘Patrick Hennessy: De Profundis’, the first queer reading of Irish modernism. He is currently a PhD candidate at Gradcam, TU Dublin.