Students from the Estonian Academy of Arts share high-flying ideas for making birdhouses at RMK’s headquarters 09.04

First year students from the Department of Interior Architecture opened the birdhouse exhibition “13 tits” in the atrium of the headquarters of the State Forest Management Centre (RMK) in Tallinn. Visitors to the exhibition can choose a free birdhouse design to take home with them, and use it to build a birdhouse for the harbingers of spring.

The birdhouses were designed and constructed in the course of the first practical course work of the autumn semester of this academic year. The students had to choose both the winged resident who would be inhabiting the birdhouse, as well as the material used to construct the house. In addition to traditional timber, concrete and bent veneer were also used. Most of the birdhouses were designed for tits.

“In the case of several birdhouses, I was surprised at the technical quality of the design as well as the appearance. Keeping in mind that for many this was their first experience with woodwork and design, the end result is great,” believes Professor Hannes Praks, from the Department of Interior Architecture, and adds: “This semester, the same course will design a hut-library intended for public use, but most of the students have no prior experience in designing and creating a spatial form. This is why the designing and construction of the birdhouses was a great warm-up round before designing a larger box meant for people.”

The course was instructed by designers Ahti Grünberg and Tõnis Kalve, from Derelict Furniture. Fred Jüssi consulted the students. The exhibition also features bird photos by zoologist Tiit Hunt, with short descriptions of the habitats these species prefer.

Visitors to the exhibition can grab a copy of the bird house design they like best, and use it to build their own birdhouse at home. According to Tiit Hunt, there are about thirty species of birds in Estonia who nest in birdhouses; and even though the houses can be set up all year round, the best time to do so is in April and May.

“There is something modern about sharing the drafts. In the music industry, bands who are just starting out are no longer looking to sell CDs at any price to have people listen to their music for the first time; instead, everything is available for free online. This is why the free sharing by the students of interior architecture seems far more reasonable than rigidly protecting their first creation with a patent. Income will come later, and from somewhere else,” commented Praks on the free sharing of the house designs.

The exhibition “13 tits” will be open from 9 April to 21 May, between the hours of 9-18, in the atrium of RMK’s headquarters in Tallinn (Toompuiestee 24). The exhibition is free of charge.
The infographics of the exhibition were designed by Mariana Hint.

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Solveig Jahnke
Telephone +372 6267 111
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Hannes Praks
Estonian Academy of Arts
Department of Interior Architecture