The International Exhibition of Artistic Bookbinding and Calligraphy “Scripta Manet II” (written stays) took place from September 21st to October 22nd 2000. This exhibition took place within the overall framework of the Estonian Book Year, and was dedicated in honor of two important occasions in the history of the Estonian bookbinding: the 475th anniversary of the publication of the first Estonian book, and the 110th anniversary of the birth of Eduard Taska, the most famous figure in Estonian bookbinding history.
The purpose of this exhibition was to develop an introduction to the traditions of Estonian bookbinding and its creative ideas, to integrate many different aspects of Estonian culture, to introduce artisans from different cultural and educational backgrounds in designer bookbinding and calligraphy to the world at the threshold of a new millennium, to enable artisans from other countries to participate in a unique aspect of Estonian culture, and through their participation and creativity to contribute to the world’s culture.
"The “Scripta Manet II” exhibition was centered on Estonian literary and artistic culture. It was based on the interpretation of works of Estonian poets Doris Kareva and Jaan Kaplinski through designer bookbinding, the physical form of the book, written art, calligraphic interpretation, graphics, ceramics, glass work, photography, film, and other artistic media. The books used were printed in a limited, numbered edition especially for the event. The text was written in both Estonian and English, and included a preface and biography of the authors. Artists were free to add superficial or spatial illustrations as they wished. The goal was to show spectators the book as a three-dimensional object and reveal it as an organic object possessing its own inner life.
Historical Background:
The evolution of Estonian bookbinding began in the first ten years of the 21st century and is connected with Eduard Taska, whose 110th birthday we celebrate in the year 2000. Traditions in Estonian bookbinding are a century old. Lively bookbinding exhibition activity began between 1960 and 1980. The first so-called international exhibition of artistic bookbinding took place in 1990 in the Applied Art Museum in Tallinn. After the restoration of Estonian independence in 1991, free communication began with colleagues in the international field of artistic bookbinding. “Scripta Manet I” took place in the National Library of Estonia in 1995. This exhibition featured 76 participants from 12 different nations and was accompanied with a conference and published catalogue.