Maarit Murka (born 1981) is one of the most renowned young artists of Estonia, best known for her masterful photorealistic paintings that often use the artist herself as a model. Murka has also experimented with photography, video, installations, etc.
Murka has been found to be among the few living proofs that resignation and rejection of humanism are not an absolute thing within the so-called new generation. She takes an active interest in socio-historic circumstances, while studying it through her personal prism: what made me what I am as an artist and a person?
Openness towards the world and the spirit of an explorer have driven Murka to some rather controversial destinations – one the one hand, the holy places of various religions, and from the other hand, the concentration camps of the World War II turned into museums, military bases in Afganistan, etc. What does the malice of the past mean at the present, the beginning of the 21st century, and what should we do about this?
Regarding the visual language, Murka´s paintings are often film-like. Her works don´t seem to be independent units but leave an impressioon of being stills from a longer narratiive. Film is a topic that has attracted many contemporary artists but Murka is one of the few also dealing with this field “officially“. After graduating from the Academy of Fine Arts of Helsinki and Estonian Academy of Arts, she pursues her second Master´s degree at the Baltic Film and Media school.
Prizes: The Sovereign European Art Prize finalist (2010), Sankt-Peterburg I Baltic Biennale prize (2008), Vaal Gallery annual art prize (2005).
Works in collections: Tartu Art Museum, private collections in Estonia, Latvia, Finland, Sweden, France, Hungary, Italy, Russia and Denmark.
Sources used: ArtDepoo;
Treier, H. (2011). “About the paintings of Maarit Murka“ in My first Art Collection, No 2