Uneversum: Rhythms and Spaces


Ground floor hall

ETDM’s exhibition “Uneversum: Rhythms and Spaces” employs everyday objects and radical visions to explore the times and spaces in which we sleep.

“Rhythms and Spaces” explores the fascinating relationship between radical ideas and the everyday as they interact with sleeping spaces, environments, and time and timekeeping. The exhibition showcases the work of both foreign and Estonian designers who – through visions of the future to approaches dating back over a century – explore the spaces and times that we dedicate to sleep. 

The display is divided thematically into four. The first two themes, “Designing and Depicting Time” and “Room for Sleep” draw upon themes that resounded throughout the 20th century and came under critique in the 1960s and 1970s – efficiency and speed, control, and the modernist creeds of progress and future-oriented thinking. Architects and designers have consistently tried to place, design and rethink the sleeping area and its related things. The other two themes, “Far and Near Futures” and “The Sleep of Machines”, explore the present. The specificities, fears, conventions and inspiration of situations dedicated to sleep are presented here through speculative art and design projects.

Although the focus is on the space for sleep, “Rhythms and Spaces” does not attempt to provide an exhaustive history of beds or bedrooms. Instead, it juxtaposes everyday objects with design projects and works of art to illustrate how the perception of time, space, and sleep has shifted and how it resonates with our experience of the world today.

The exhibition is open at the Estonian Museum of Applied Art and Design until 7 April.

Curator: Sandra Nuut

Designers: HG Architecture (HGA) Andrea Ainjärv, Anna Endrikson, Evelyn Fridolin, and Tomomi Hayashi

Exhibition production: Valge Kuup

Graphic design: WWW stuudio, Ranno Ait 

Exhibition team: Helen Adamson, Kai Lobjakas, Silvia Pärmann, Ketli Tiitsar, and Toomas Übner

Sponsors: Embassy of Austria, Estonian Cultural Endowment, Estonian Academy of Arts, Nordic Hotel Forum, Treimann Mööbel ja Disain

Many thanks to Aina Alunurm, Harri Ausmaa, Avinurme Vanavara, DFF – Deutsches Filminstitut & Filmmuseum, Estonian Museum of Architecture, Art Museum of Estonia, Tanel Eigi, Flat & Bound / Integral Lars Müller, Eliina Grünberg, Ignazia Favata / Studio Joe Colombo, Triin Jerlei, Madis Kurss, Else Lagerspetz, New York Museum of Modern Art, Helen Oja, Poltronova, Eva Ponomarjov, Pärnu’s Trall kindergarten, National Archives of Estonia, National Library of Estonia, Refiner Translations, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, Hille Saluäär, Tallinn City Museum, Viimsi Municipality, Vienna University of Applied Arts – Collection and Archive.



Publication “Uneversum: Rhythms and Spaces”

Leaflet “Uneversum: Rhythms and Spaces” (PDF)

Public Programme

27 October: Discussion with Helga Schmid and Tõnis Jürgens, moderated by curator Sandra Nuut.

23 November: Discussion with Kärt Ojavee and Norman Orro, moderated by curator Sandra Nuut.

29 February: Discussion with Eibert Draisma and David Reinfurt, in English and moderated by Sandra Nuut.

4 April: Book launch and discussion with Tõnis Jürgens, Norman Orro, Sandra Nuut, moderated by Aleksander Tsapov.

Curatorial tours in English: 15.11, 11.01, 21.03

For school groups, we offer an exhibition-related lesson at the museum titled “Switch On, Switch Off”. For more information, please visit https://www.etdm.ee/haridus

“Uneversum” is a collaborative exhibition project between the Estonian Museum of Applied Art and Design, the Estonian Theatre and Music Museum, and the Estonian Health Museum. 

For more information, please visit www.etdm.eewww.uneversum.ee


Photos by Anu Vahtra