At the Museum of New Art, July 3-31, 2021
Award-winning French photographer Vincent Tremeau’s worldwide photo exhibition “When I Grow Up Once” talks about children’s courage, creativity, vulnerability, and the importance of education in crisis areas. The exhibition was created in cooperation with the Juhan Kuusi Dokfoto Center and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on the occasion of the 75th anniversary of the United Nations and has been traveling all over Estonia since 2021.
“Who do you want to be when you grow up?” Six years have passed since Vincent Tremeau, a photographer who captures crisis hotspots, began asking children this question wherever his work took him. In the Central African Republic, Vincent met future diamond seekers, pilots, and shopkeepers. In Mali and Niger with journalists, nurses, and farmers. In the Congo, almost half of the boys were dressed as soldiers. There were teachers in every country. There was a sailor in Iraq who had never seen the sea.
The children depicted in the exhibition are primarily between the ages of 6 and 18 and show what they want to become when they grow up with the help of handy costumes and tools. Immersing each child in a vision for the future gives us a unique look at their current living conditions and challenges.
According to one of the exhibition curators, Kristel Lauri, the pictures clearly show how important education is for boys and girls in humanitarian crises. “With this exhibition, we can bring children to the audience who are directly affected by what is happening in the conflict areas. We often see pictures in the media of devastation, unrest, soldiers, primarily adults. Most tragically, however, these conflicts affect children, their childhoods, and their dreams. How these children see the future, what they dream of and what kind of life they see possible at the exhibition, “said Laur.
The autumn of 2020 marked the 75th anniversary of the creation of the United Nations, the world’s most ambitious peace project to date. According to Liis Lipre-Järma, Director of the International Organizations and Human Rights Bureau of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, it is crucial to pay public attention to those who live in constant suffering and crises and those who help alleviate the horrors of war.
“Children are often vocal victims whose future is buried in the horrors of conflict. Development cooperation and humanitarian aid are an integral part of Estonia’s foreign policy. As an elected member of the UN Security Council, one of our focuses is to ensure the rights of children in conflict zones, “explained Lipre-Järma.
Curators: Kristel Laur and Liisa Kivimäe.
Thank you: OCHA, JoinUN75, Telliskivi Creative City, JOON, Taevas Ogilvy, Tikkurila Estonia, Ajar Studios, Hektor Konteiner Hotel, Balmerk Estonia, Kaisa Kaer, Ilmar Kurvits, Kaspar Kaur, Jason Värk and Haapsalu Cultural Center