The exhibition „Transforming Literary Places”

This exhibition seeks to explore imaginative connections between literature and other artistic forms, highlighting the way in which different media can shape, inspire, and transform physical spaces. 

We are constantly surrounded by many different media – photographs, books, digital images and narratives, movies, illustrations – and we are always interacting with them: we navigate a multimedia world on a daily basis. We also often transform these media, reshaping them in our minds, and imagining for instance how we would live in the world of a movie. When this transformation becomes an artwork itself, it is a process of transmediation.This exhibition is dedicated to exploring the rich and powerful phenomenon of transmediation, focusing on the transformation of literary places.

Geographical locations born in literary works are re-interpreted, migrating into the form of expression of another medium. With paintings, videos, music, interactive experiences, virtual and augmented reality, and mixed-media installations, international artists from different backgrounds creatively adapt a chosen literary place. 

„The exhibition has two main creative and conceptual goals: celebrating literature and its overarching influence on the arts, and reflecting on transmediation and adaptation processes."

Francesca Arnavas


Whether they represent a misty landscape from Jane Eyre, the dangerous forest of Little Red Riding Hood, the dystopian world of George Orwell’s 1984, or a dream-like Tartu inspired by Meelis Friedenthal’s Mesilased, the exhibited artworks capture in different ways the essence and contemporary meaning of multiple literary places in unique ways. This multimedia exhibition celebrates and explores both the propelling power of literary sources and the fascinating metamorphoses the encounter of different media can produce.


If the exhibition, an artwork, or one of the represented places inspires you to write a story, a poem, or just an aphorism, you are invited to submit it! The best ones will be collected and published in an exhibition compendium. 

Words of thanks:

The exhibition “Transforming Literary Places” is part of the cultural programme of the Tartu 2024 European Capital of Culture. It also features as part of the Literary Festival Prima Vista 2024 “Futures Better and Worse”, and in the social program of the International Conference of the Science Fiction Research Association (SFRA). 

This exhibition is supported by the Cultural Endowment of Estonia (Eesti Kultuurkapital).


Getting there

  • The permanent exhibition is in the University of Tartu Art Museum on the first floor of the university’s main building.
  • A wooden ramp can be used to help cross elevated areas in the Art Museum.


  • The exhibition rooms and the hallways of the main building have several chairs and benches with backs.

Read about the accessibility of the entire building here.

Curators: Francesca Arnavas and Mattia Bellini

Exhibition artist: Madis Liplap

Artists: Adela Ruckova, Alan Marshall, Alexandra Gushurst-Moore, Aliona Yarova, Ana Barroso, Giuseppe Bergamino,  Hannah Burroughs, India Lawton, Jean Lorrah, Jolene Armstrong, Kari Maaren, Katerina Deligianni, Kirsten Rae Simonsen, Lauren Moffatt, Mattia Bellini, Mez Breeze, Monika Požek, Nguyen Thien Ngoc Tuyen, Nick Montfort and Stephanie Strickland,  Olena Solohub, Petra Schwarzer, Roberta Alberti, Rossella Schillaci, Serra Ataman, Tim Hutchings, Veronika Rejfířová, Veronika Wuycheck, Viive Noor, Yana Knight, Zane Shumeiko.

Project Manager: Karoliina Kalda

Communication: Triinu Rosenberg and Ilona Piirimägi