To find an architectural design for the exhibition information point and recreation area, Maajaam announced an open call titled “Wild Space”. The chosen concept, titled “Puffballs,” was submitted by Estonian architects Johan Kirsimäe and Markus Varki.

“Puffballs” draws inspiration from the lush nature surrounding Maajaama in Southern Estonia and the wild theme of the outdoor exhibition. The conceptual core focuses on the richness of nature, particularly the diversity of the fungal world. The abundant flora and fauna provide “Puffballs” with design inspiration – it is reflected in the design of the recreation area and multipurpose pavilion, which mimics the shape of puffball fungus and creates a visual bridge between nature and architecture.

This project is part of the Creative Europe Cooperation Project “SPACE: Sustainable Production for Artistic Communities in Europe”. The SPACE project partners are cultural organisation Ascendum (LV), creative agency Kemmler Kemmler (DE), art space in the wild SAVVAĻA (LV) and residencies organizer Wild Bits at Maajaam (EE).

Co-funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union. Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.

Johan Kirsimäe and Markus Varki are young freelance architects from Tartu. They studied architecture together at the Estonian Academy of Arts, and after their studies have practiced abroad and also in Estonia. Their creative process draws inspiration from the do-it-yourself mentality, where the architectural-research form is dedicated to re-use materiality as well as the creation of space that is free from constraints.

Photos by Jenna Velsvebel, Saara Tõugjas