Ptarmigan is now closed.

Ptarmigan operated in Tallinn from 2011-2014. We no longer maintain any presence in Tallinn, but this website will continue to serve as an archive of the activities produced at Ptarmigan during these years.


Ptarmigan and The Penitentiary: Battery Project presents Done Kino 2014!

If you are interested to shoot short films in Tallinn's Patarei Prison and experience an experimental version of collaborative cinematic improvisation event called Kino Kabaret, you should participate in the weekend Done Kino on 15 -17 August 2014.

Registration form and more info can be found here.

Kino Kabaret events have character of temporary film labs taking place all around the world where all kind of cinematic artisans gather for several days, divided into sessions of various amount and length, to create short low-budget films in an improvisational manner. Usually each session contains three main parts: a production meeting; shooting and editing; and screening of films made during a session.

Done Kino is the first Kino Kabaret cell in Estonia established in 2013. Each year it tackles a different topic, although the same principle: to dig up forgotten and pushed out of the consciousness by ignorance, laziness, procrastination, or fear, issues, and in its holly awkwardness, expose and transform them into the starting point for much more exciting scenarios.

It’s second edition is takes place at Patarei which from 1840 served many functions in changeable historical times (sea-fortress, military barracks, Soviet and Estonian prison, dark tourism venue), reflecting the long and complex relationships between Estonia and Russia at different stages in their histories.

Done Kino 2014 wants to add one more episode to this historical fate: collaboration between Estonian, Russian, and foreign filmmakers. Therefore we look for variously original and experienced (or unexperienced) directors, scriptwriters, actors, camera operators, film editors, animators, sound designers, and musicians who are brave and creative enough to overcome passive acceptance of the current division of the Estonian and Russian cultural scene and treat terrifying but stunning premises of Patarei as a stage of inspiring and potentially ground-breaking shooting location, Kinolab and projection hall. It is all not about integration or assimilation, but more about going beyond exclusion caused by mutual ignorance and taking it as an excuse for collaboration. One can never know how much creative potential is in unexplored human relations restricted by reactionist divisions based on the ideological and cultural convention of belonging. Nevertheless, Done Kino has no interest in politics, but filmmaking, creativity, spontaneity, self-organization and non-competitiveness.

There's a lot happening at Ptarmigan during the rest of the summer.


Sara Evelyn-Brown & Meera Shakti Osborne (UK) visit Tallinnn with their Human Space project, which explores the city though deliberately incorrect maps during walks on Wednesday and Thurdsay 30-31 July, and then dissects the experience with a workshop on Friday 1 August. It's free - just register.

Jasmin Schaitl and William 'Bilwa' Costa are familiar faces, having performed and led workshops multiple times in the past. They come back in early August to lead the sense and experience workshop, a three day investigation into improvisation, sound and movement. There are still spaces left, and you can register here.

In late August, artist-in-residence Marko Timlin will lead a workshop on interactive, sensor-based music systems. The workshop will explore how sensors can be used to further interaction for sound design, installations or instrument building. It will use Arduino and Max/MSP among other technologies. Registration is here.


Performance and sound:

This Friday, Mexican sound artist Mario de Vega stops by Ptarmigan for an afternoon artist talk and presentation of his work, before performing at Katla Aed in the evening. It starts at 15:00.

Bilwa and Jasmin will perform collaboration #014, in their on-going series, at the beginning of their residency. The sense and experience workshop will also culminate in a performance on the evening of 10 August, for friends and family of the workshop participants (and anyone else interested).

Japanese/Austrian performer Arai Mayumi will perform 'untitled' on 6 August. This durational performance is built around a large transparent plastic sheet and will go from 17:00 - 20:00.

Finnish underground music legends Avarus FINALLY visit Ptarmigan Tallinn to perform, in an all-day mini-festival called Jökkijäkkisnäcki 2. On 16 August, Avarus and a bunch of their offshoot side projects will play, along with new Tallinn/Helsinki band Third Approach.

Marko Timlin will showcase his Sensor-Sound-Machine creation in a small concert on the evening of 30 August.


Gatherings and other meetups:

Our largest production of the year is the Kompass event, a gathering for Estonian and Latvian culture creators, artists and activitists. The theme of the event is 'public space' and will occur over two days with an un-conference, presentations and discussions, and speed workshops. Kompass is designed not just to connect like-minded people but to actually establish some new initiatives. More information can be found on the Kompass website.

Tallinn's modular synth community will have a meetup on 23 August at Ptarmigan, for people building their own synths and similar projects to show off what they have done and meet others.

Our ongoing Avatud Toimingud series concludes, first with EKKM's Anders Härm on 20 August, and then with Ptarmigan volunteer John W. Fail on 10 September. These events always include lively discussions about the ways in which we organise art and culture events, and seek to de-mystify the process. Avatud Toimingud is supported by the Estonian Ministry of Culture.

Nikki Kane and Will Slater answered our open call, proposing peripatetic projects, based around the act of walking through spaces urban and emotional. Though both of them hail from the still-United Kingdom (Nikki from Glasgow and Will from London), the two did not know each other, though they coincidentally arrived here during the same time and with similar ideas.

We invite you to participate in their walks, starting Monday with Nikki's We Move in Order to See and following it up on Tuesday with Will's Failure's Guide to Finding Tallinn. While both activities are walks, we promise two very different approaches - Nikki will raise questions about how we exist and perceive our surroundings, while Will will inject a personal, emotional angle based on his impressions of Tallinn over the last few days.

Both events will start at Ptarmigan but we will leave the space together at 19:45 and 19:15 respectively, so don't be late!

We have started a podcast, which will feature recordings from discussions, presentations, and other events that take place at Ptarmigan. We started this to release the recordings of the Avatud Toimingud project, and begin with our first event, which featured Triinu Aron. All of the forthcoming Avatud Toimingud events will be recorded, as well as similar events which work in the audio-only form. And we have a few archival recordings as well to dig out, clean up, and post.

You can subscribe to the podcasts through iTunes and they will also appear in our regular RSS feed.

May brings Finnish artist Kimmo Modig to Ptarmigan for the first half of his Axis of Praxis residency, where he will host a series of events every Sunday afternoon at 14:00. All SUNDAYS WITH KIMMO events are free to attend and include breakfast and coffee. Come and meet him!


the artist is present as they say. If you wanna meet me for a coffee, drop by. There’s another Ptarmigan event taking place at 9pm. I have a skype meeting at some point during the day, but other than that I’m free. my number is +358 44 3630640, or just pop by and see if I’m there.




Music! I’m playing with my dear friend Juhani Liimatainen who has worked with the big names of Finnish classical music (Kaija Saariaho, Mangus Lindberg et al), as well as with contemporary theatre, Free Improv and Jazz musicians, and pretty much done everything a sound artist can do here. We’ll be both playing electronics, most likely very concrete stuff like bird sounds and fun stuff like that. I’m sure you’d like it! And if not, well, there’s coffee and the view from the balcony at Ptarmigan is pretty stunning. It’ll be like maybe 2 hours, and there will be other guests as well.
I'll let you know if there'll be other artists as well, I think there will. Check Ptarmigan facebook when we're closer to the date for more info. Please be on time!



Workshop! I’ll talk about how I usually do my performances and we’ll do some practical things. We’ll talk a lot since that’s what I do, but I don’t mean like conversation, but, like, figure out how to talk in front of audience. We'll think of how to use your body/life and stuff like that. Check out my videos from my home page to grasp an idea of what I’m doing. Though of course the workshop is very much about the people who show up, I’ll be the instigator and rallyist. Actually, maybe worksohp is a wrong word. Let's just get together and I'll tell u what I know about speaking in public & performing, and you tell what u know and we'll take it from there.




Non-artist talk! I will not talk about myself (well that’s new), but instead will present some of the works & artists I love a lot. So basically a screening. John and Hannah from Ptarmigan will make me suffer every time I mention myself. Drinking game might be in order, people! I think I’ll focus on artists who are based on Helsinki so we’ll get, I don’t know, cultural exchange vibez, eh? But anyway an evening of worship on the altar of great art.


Photo: Hertta Kiiski

In addition to the weekly SUNDAYS WITH KIMMO/PÜHAPÄEVAD KIMMOGA events, Kimmo is writing one hour a day throughout the month, published on the Kimmo Modig: Tallinn Stories website that we launched. This is some raw, naked expression that discusses art, creation, self-reliance, and house music. 

You'll get these posts along with our regular events + announcements if you subscribe to our RSS feed.

April is shaping up to be a busy month of music here at Ptarmigan. In addition to our regular open sessions each fortnight (where a local artist performs a short set and then the audience is encouraged -- no, required! - to collaborate) we are accomodating several touring artists during the month. Though our room is small, our audience is warm and welcoming so we hope to provide an alternative space for experimental and avant-garde sounds in Tallinn.

On two Mondays we have touring artists performing. On the 14th, ASTEPBACK arrives from Italy. Andrea Saggiomo performed here two years ago as 70fps (with Aspect) and will again be bringing the world of 16mm film and sound together. Supporting them, appropriately, is Plucié des Andes, consisting of Marek and James from Ptarmigan Finland. On the 28th, Den Arkaiska Rösten (from Uppsala) brings their unique blend of drones and tones, and open session mastermind Ted Parker will be supporting.

The open sessions will continue throughout the summer and additional musical activity is always a possibility...