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Fotografiska for Life special exhibition

Embrace the difference

Hero Image for Embrace the difference

In recent years, we have all had the opportunity to experience a life of isolation and to feel how it can affect our mental and emotional health, the balance of which is not necessarily our own decision. Although today’s Estonian society is much more tolerant than in the past, we still see little awareness, cool feelings or reluctance towards people with special needs. Anything different from the norm makes people wary and distanced.

Estonian society’s knowledge, behaviour and attitudes towards people with special needs need to change. The exhibition aims to raise awareness of people with special needs. In addition, it aims to change attitudes and show how what at first glance seems to be an anomaly can actually fit into the norm, if only you expand your own boundaries. And finally, to change people’s behaviour, or rather to move us all a step closer, instead of distancing ourselves. The exhibition is motivated by the need to promote the social integration of people with special needs. In fact, a person with a mental disability is simply an aspect of the person within us – one that, if we get to know it, will make us a more whole and better person.

The artists participating in the exhibition have been selected through an Open Call organised in autumn 2021. The artists portray people with special needs living in Estonia and their activities through different approaches – Silvia Sosaar (EST) has conducted video interviews, Anna Pazucha (EST) has captured the work of people with special needs, Julia SH (SWE) has focused on portrait photography.

The exhibition was funded by the European Social Fund and the Cultural Endowment of Estonia, in cooperation with the Ministry of Social Affairs, Welfare Services and Miltton.