Programme 2019


Exhibition “Anglers. Silvia Jõgever and Kadi Estland” (ET)

16.30 Kumu Art Museum

The exhibition “Anglers. Silvia Jõgever and Kadi Estland” is a dialogue between two female artists of different generations. Silvia Jõgever (1924–2005) was an artist and art teacher from Tartu whose works that seem dreamy at first glance have a defiant and melancholy atmosphere and feature the motif of a stage as a metaphor for life. The centre of these compositions, which have been produced during the 1960s and the 1970s, is the female figure, approached from different angles. At this exhibition, the works by Jõgever are framed conceptually by the politically charged work of Kadi Estland (1973), which also collides with them and is influenced by them. Through this dialogue, the exhibition touches upon issues related to the dynamics between women and society, such as violence against women, women’s social visibility, women’s freedom of decision in personal life, and the role of a (female) artist in society. 

The exhibition curator is Eda Tuulberg and the exhibition design is done by Kadi Estland.

A performance by the director and choreographer Kaja Kann, based on the memories of Silvia Jõgever and with “censorship” as the keyword, will take place at the opening of the exhibition. 

Latvian women’s Stand-up comedy performance (EN)

19.00 Feministeerium office

Women’s Stand-up is a joint creative adventure for many Latvian creatives, writers, poets, producers, filmmakers, film critics and other women who want to give comedy a try. Since 2014, more than 50 women have participated in sold-out monthly performances in Kanepes Kulturas Centrs and many other venues. They all are different but have one important thing in common – a witty and nonconforming look at our modern society. 


Performance “Nina, K and Connie” (EN)

10.40–11.00. Room A501

*Click HERE for the text in English*

For Tallinn Feminist Forum an imagination of a possible utopian future will be created through a short piece of speculative fiction on collectivity. This fiction will be in response to a comment from Marge Piercy in her text “Woman on the Edge of Time Forty years on” (2016). There she describes how in the second-wave women’s movement many utopias were created, whereas now they are not. Piercy says “[in the 1970s] Feminist utopias were created out of a hunger for what we didn’t have, at a time when change felt not only possible but probable. Utopias came forth from the desire to imagine a better society, when we dared to do so. When our political energy goes into defending rights, whereas projects we won and created are now under attack, there is far less energy for imagining fully depicted future societies we might wish to live in.” The aim of this work is to focus on historical and contemporary ideas of collectivity to imagine new feminist futurities.

The performance text will be invoked from utopian novels from the 1970s (such as Woman on the Edge of Time (1976) by Marge Piercy, The Female Man (1975) by Joanna Russ and The Dispossessed (1974) by Ursula K Le Guin); as well as texts that resulted from the techno-positive, collective-positive cyberfeminist movement (such as Zeros and Ones (1997) by Sadie Plant and A Cyberfeminist Manifesto for the 21st Century (1991) by VNS Matrix); as well as drawing from more recent works (such as Storytelling for Earthly Survival (2016) by Donna Haraway and Xenofeminism (2018) by Helena Hester) and positive aspects of artists’ own experiences living and working in collectives. Some parts of the text will be extracted from these materials, while other parts will be newly written aimed at developing a utopian futurity. 

The performance draws on the hopefulness of these historical and current texts, and pauses to imagine feminist utopian ideas of collectivity. Connie, who is the protagonist of the piece, will be on-site in Tallinn Feminist Forum speaking to Nina and K who are somewhere else.

The performance is made with support from Iaspis, the Swedish Arts Grants Committee’s international programme for Visual and Applied Artists and the Nordic-Baltic mobility programme.

Artists Anna Kinbom (Stockholm, Sweden), Choterina Freer (Glasgow, UK) and Rut Karin Zettergren (Stockholm, Sweden) have worked collectively in several group situations; including for the past five years as a part of 0s+1s Collective. They are currently involved in a reading and discussion group on speculative feminist science fiction. For more see:

Talk “How to create safer movements” (EN)

11.00–12.30. Room A501

The talk is about all-round involvement, accessibility and creating safer events and movements. How to set up an activity in such a way that it ensures inclusion of as many people with different needs as possible? What needs to be taken into account for participants to feel comfortable? The talk introduces the most important answers to these questions, and every listener is invited to participate in voluntary exercises and think about how they themselves could create safer movements.

Presenter Erika-Evely Ee Eisen is 34 years old and from Tallinn. She lives in Helsinki and works as a freelance writer and educator, sexologist, and sexuality and gender diversity expert. Eisen is one of the founders of Helsinki Feminist Forum (FEMF).

Conversation with Maryan Abdulkarim on antiracist activism (EN)

13.00–14.30. Room A403

What does it mean to be a black or brown body in Finland? How are those experiences discussed and made visible by cultural and political initiatives which are led by people of color? Which strategies have been useful in order to bring together Afro-Finnish communities? What role does feminism hold within antiracist community organising?  What can we learn from those experiences in Estonia?

Maryan Abdulkarim is an activist and writer based in Helsinki. She works in the field of media and culture, focusing on issues that relate to the intersection of gender, ethnicity, class and religion. Abdulkarim regularly writes columns for Finnish broadcasting company Yle and Hufvudstatsbladet. She co-authored the book Ten Myths about Feminism (2018) with Eveliina Talvitie and is currently working on a book about first generation immigrants who arrived in Finland between 1950-1990, with photojournalist Uwa Iduozee. Talk is moderated by Airi Triisberg.

Talk is supported by Cultural Endowment of Estonia and the Finnish Institute in Estonia.

Workshop “Leadership” (EN)

13.00–14.30 and 16.00–17.00. Room A502

The leadership workshop focuses on how to move from an idea, question or puzzle on to an action plan. The session will start with the presumption that things do not have to be the way they are and that the change is possible. Concrete ways, values, character and mission, that help build a plan will be discussed.

The speaker together with the listeners will analyse inspiring leaders and look at the modern take on leadership. In particular, the fundamental role of values and the idea of character-driven leadership will be discussed. This is particularly relevant for activists as they often lead from the position of their own persuasive power and integrity, having to build coalitions and rally resources with little formal power. Authenticity and values are therefore fundamental tools of leadership. This also means that a leader is not predefined by stereotypes. 

NB! The workshop is given in two parts, see the schedule. During the workshop the preference will be given to participants who come up with their own ideas, questions or suggestions to do something, no matter how small or large. Pre-registration is needed, write at to guarantee your spot.

Facilitator Liisa Past has dedicated her life to solving issues people do not always wake up worrying about. As an activist and educator, she focuses on human rights and critical thinking as ways to create a just world. She has worked with causes ranging from development cooperation and gender-neutral partnership to open public discussion space. She has taught courses on strategic communication, practical rhetoric and political culture, always focusing on building strong arguments and including diverse voices. Liisa’s professional life increasingly focuses on cyber security and she spent 2018-2019 as a Next Generation Leader at the McCain Institute for International Leadership at the Arizona State University focusing on protecting the technology underlying democratic governance.

Talk “How to organise a march?” (ET)

13.00–14.30. Room A503

In January 2019 the Women’s March was held in Estonia for the first time. In this talk, we are hoping to get a better idea what the future of the Women’s March could be in Estonia. Was the last march a suitable method of raising awareness of the problem areas connected with gender equality? What’s the aim of the Women’s March? Is there a need to march again, and if so, when would be the best time? Which topic or topics could the new march focus on, and who will lead the effort? We are hoping to have an active discussion. If we don’t find answers to all of the questions, then the main aim of the meeting is to decide whether or not the 2020 Women’s March is taking place, and to put together a new team of organisers.

NB! This part of the programme is in Estonian but the facilitators are flexible to change into English if the participants agree.

Facilitator Liisi Raidna is a housewife, feminist, museum worker, bike enthusiast, and a guard activist. Liisi believes in chaos and fairy tales.

Workshop “Help yourself” (EN)

16.00–17.30. Room A403

At this workshop participants are asked to help themselves to 3 different practical self-care tools, when they run low on energy. Quite often people involved in fighting for human rights, be it women’s rights, LGBT+ rights or rights of equality of any other group are so involved in caring about others and aiming to achieve better lives for others that they forget, or even do not know how to take care of themselves. Perfectionism, the strong drive to help but not being able to see the result of changing systematic oppressions right away just keep adding up and may lead to depression, PTSD and burn-out. It means only one thing – in order to be effective activists and be able to fight for our own rights and the rights of others we must take care of ourselves first. During this workshop, we will offer you [a safe] space and time to reflect on your needs, look at the big picture and try out three different self-care tools that you can use in the future, as well to get in tune with your inner self and be able to continue the fight.

Facilitator Anete Biteniece used to work as a science teacher, currently a stay-at-home mom, recovering perfectionist herself. Facilitator Annija Sprīvule is a LGBT+ rights activist since 2012, co-founder of the first ladyfest in Latvia – LadyFest Riga, has experience in pedagogy and works in the field of education, is interested in intersectionality and self-care.

Talk “Transnational Queer Underground” (EN)

16.00–17.00. Room A501

TQU is very much interested in and driven by the idea of movement. Some of the questions defining the Transnational Queer Underground are, is: How can we actually take global responsibility? (How) can we share our privileges? How do we create meaningful connections across borders? How can we include people in online activism and create a community even if people cannot come out in the open where they live? (How) does everybody stay safe doing that? There is still so much more to learn and also there is space for TQU to grow and improve, which is why everyone is very welcome to join the discussion – let’s learn from each other and grow better together!

TQU has come a long way during the last ten years, and its founder will give a short talk of around half an hour to present the work of TQU, past and current projects, as well as introduce ways for people to get involved. Along the way the speaker will share some experiences and strategies that have worked better than others, as well as pitfalls and barriers that the community has encountered. Thereafter, listeners can share their experiences, ask questions and have an open discussion.

Transnational Queer Underground was founded in a bedroom in Ukraine in 2009. It was inspired by the Riot grrrl movement and DIY punk culture and was aiming to become a way to share research and an open place for shared knowledge and connections. Ten years later it has grown immensely: TQU is a registered NGO in Germany and has attracted active contributors and volunteers from around the world. TQU inspired people to come out, to publish their stories or art for the very first time. The community has had public exhibitions around Europe and will soon publish its very first book

Presenter Verena Spilker is the founder of Transnational Queer Underground and a queer artist from Berlin. She draws, designs, writes, teaches and organises transnational events and projects. Verena is interested in exploring the relationship of self to the other, exchange, and places where people can come together. She is fascinated by patterns, structures and shapes. She has two adopted dogs and likes to spend as much time as possible outside the city.

Workshop “Supporting the trans movement as a feminist” (ET)

16.00–17.30. Room A503

The workshop invites you to discuss the following topics:

  • How to act and speak up as a feminist supporting trans rights. We will discuss the most important issues facing the trans movement
  • What is trans etiquette?
  • Gender as a spectrum vs gender binary

Facilitator August has been a trans rights activist for many years. He has been a member of the SETA Youth Council (Finland) and a board member of the Estonian LGBT Association. He brings together trans people in informal settings, building communities in Tallinn. Facilitator Mari-Liis is a feminist and human rights and equality lawyer. She has worked at the European trans people’s organisation for two years.

Talk “Towards A Feminine Way of Doing Politics” (EN)

17.00–18.00. Room A501

The rise of the right at the turn of every other decade has been deeply linked with a critical mass of frustrated masculinity. Most of the response to it has also been very masculine, aggressive and confrontational. In his talk, Tarun wishes to call for a different, a very compassionate kind of politics – feminine politics. With feminine, the speaker does not refer to the essentialist notions of women’s abilities, but rather the politics that is rooted in unique perspectives and collective capacities of ordinary people outside the churning of dominant masculinity. Politics that seeks to change rather than fight. Tarun will present a case for such politics based on the lives of post-colonial activists like Gandhi & Tagore who kept away from the dominant, hyper-masculine ideas of liberalism, nationalism, and Marxism and instead insisted on the need for self-transformation, kindness, sacrifice and pragmatism.

Tarun Gidwani holds an MA degree in Poverty and Development from the University of Sussex and an MA in Philosophy from University of Tartu.

Talk “Boy or girl or unclear“ (ET*)

17.00–17.30. Room A502

Sven happened onto the topic of intersexuality about two years ago, and to this day it is still surprising how many people there are who don’t know anything about it. There is a lot of prejudice and false information that should be countered with arguments and explanations. Sven will talk about female, intersex and male anatomy, a few of the biological reasons for intersexuality, medical interventions throughout the last half-century, the state of the debate in other parts of the world, what the potential social developments are, and what they could look like. After the talk, Sven would like to hear what the audience thinks, and how we could promote the rights of intersexual individuals in Estonia.

Presenter Sven(-Erik) Viira is a humanist, sceptic and atheist, whose main interest over the last few years has been religion. Having heard dozens of debates, they realised that passivism doesn’t support social development. Although there isn’t a serious conflict between secularism and religion in Estonia, gender equality is debated a lot. Intersexuality is a phenomenon between the two dominant sexes, and though Viira wouldn’t claim that they are an activist on the subject, they are certainly not a passivist.

Talk “About the ability of disabled women to participate in social movements in Estonia” (ET*)

17.30–18.00. Room A502

Mare Abner is a chairwoman of the Estonian Association of Disabled Women and has advocated the interests of women with disabilities for more than 20 years. She has propagated gender equality and stood for a society free from violence and abuse of people with disabilities. In her talk, Abner uses her own biography as a means to describe the opportunities for disabled women to participate in social movements in Estonia.

TALFF afterparty by Queer Planet

20.00 EKKM cafe. Donation-based ticketing

Queer Planet is an underground party series which took off the earth in 2016. Queer Planet is exploring atmospheres where breathing would not be troubled by hetero/cis-normativity and expensive fares. Our parties feature long bathroom-line-chats, lots of sweat on the dancefloor and freedom for autonomous expression. For TALFF, Queer Planet will temporarily dock with the earth, again.

* This part of the programme is in Estonian and could be whisper interpreted. If you wish to take part and need a whisper interpretation (Estonian-English-Estonian available), please write to Nele (in which workshops and in which language) at by October 18th at the latest.