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17. Feb 2024 - 24. Feb 2025

Exhibition “Who Claims the Night?”

10:00 - 18:00

Tartu city | ERMi galerii, B-fuajee ja keldrikorrus

  • Exhibition/museum
  • Lisaprogramm
Ticket booth (on location) 7 - 15 €


In 2024, the Estonian National Museum will shine a light on city life at night. The exhibition ‘Who Claims the Night?’ explores how people have experienced the night in Estonian cities in the past, and delves into the multitude of meanings of the contemporary night

Throughout history, night life has been shaped by power and culture. The mediaeval Tallinn locked its gates against the dangers lurking in the night, and sent all townspeople home in the evening without exception, to allow them to wake up rested in the morning. Just 150 or so years ago, the streets were shrouded in darkness, wolves howled in the suburbs… The only ones moving around were the night watchmen tasked with maintaining order and disciplining nightgoers, if necessary. Modern cities and towns, in contrast, are always awake, providing necessary services and diverse forms of cultural life throughout the night.

On the one hand, night life in cities is perceived as a problem and a danger, something to be regulated using laws and restrictions. On the other hand, however, nighttime is perceived as a time of freedom and entertainment, and a different sort of space-time compared to the day. Night life involves sensual pleasures, experimentation, creativity – but also danger and the breaking of rules. The city has its own rhythm and atmosphere at night that has inspired countless artists, writers, and musicians. The night is an exciting and many-sided environment.

If you want to grab a bite or need a place to stay, see what the Tartu 2024 hospitality network offers in the area:


  • EST
  • ENG


  • Partially accessible for people with reduced mobility


Eesti Rahva Muuseum


Muuseumi tee 2, Tartu, Tartu maakond, Eesti

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