On May 10th, Anu Raud became 80 and Arnold Rüütel 95 years old. The third creator whose highlights began in New York is only 62.

Kalev Mark Kostabi was born in 1960 in Los Angeles. Back then his parents, refugees from Estonia had no idea that their son would reach the top of his career at the beginning of the 1990ies already. In New York Kalev Mark established his art factory KOSTABI WORLD where artists from Eastern Europe painted surreal artworks of the motives of world famous classics (Hopper, Rodin, Picasso etc). The egg as the symbol of the beginning of life has been the pervasive image in the work of almost all surrealists.

The highlights abroad for Arnold Rüütel were surely visiting President Bush in the White House in the spring of 1991 and his speech as that of the first Estonian’s in front of the General Assembly of the UN in the autumn of 1991 when the three Baltic states were admitted as members in the UN. And perhaps the “highest“ meeting for President Rüütel took place at the apartment of Kalev Mark Kostabi on the 56th floor of the 5th Avenue!

Anu Raud’s artwork which has made the highest flight is also in New York. It is “Mother Tree“, completed of 9 skirts and a pair of gloves from Kihnu Island (first made for an exhibition Christmas Tree 2000 at the Museum of New Art) given by President Lennart Meri as a gift from the Estonian people to the United Nations in 1995. This magic artwork is in the southern foyer of the UN building where the bright sun fades the colours and so gives reason for the artist to go to New York and switch the old skirts with new ones.

Anu Raud’s and Arnold Rüütel’s highlights are shown in the docs by Mark Soosaar in the museum’s video rooms – “Anu Raud. Life Patterns“ (30 min.) and „The First Citizen of Estonia“ (50 min.)

Kalev Mark Kostabi’s paintings and posters of the present exhibition are born in Kostabi World in New York, his graphic art in the Litography Center, established by Jaak Visnap, in Tallinn and drawings at a croquis in the Museum of New Art together with Evald Okas and other artists.

The music – an unofficial anthem of the Big Apple – New York, performed by Frank Sinatra.

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