Statue – a word so ambiguous that it attached itself to the photos. For some the first thing to come to mind is a heroic monument, for others a boring bust of a politician or perhaps the Statue of Liberty in New York. For many the word statue represents something ancient, from the Greek or Roman times.

Photographic artist Kaupo Kikkas together with makeup artist Õnne Rudi transformed Estonian top athletes into human sculptures thus revitalising the beauty ideals of ancient Greece. This paved the way for live statues that comprehend the aesthetic beauty of their stone counterparts without the coldness and sterility.

“The Statue is my homage to the classic beatyu ideals that have withstood the test of thousands of years and have inspired artists during that whole period. Estonia lacks the sculptural heritage of ancient cultures and save a few, we don’t have many classic sculptures.

In a way, I filled that gap and portrayed the human body as malleable material – we transformed the into statues by covering them in stucco. The aim was to remove humanity but despite the efforts they remained somewhat human! They have all the good traits of a statue but lack the coldness of stone and its inhuman perfection. It is a divine material that every artist dreams of working with.” – Kaupo Kikkas.

The exhibition was donated to the International Federation of Body Building and Fitness, and after its début in Estonia, it will travel across the world. Kaupo Kikkas is a renowned photographer and photographic artist who is mostly known as a portrait photographer and photography teacher. The Statue is Kikkas’ eighth personal exhibition. –

Models: Janar Rückenberg, Ott Kiivikas, Indrek Viska, Martin Münz, Marti Taru, Oleg Anissimov, Raigo Kuusnõmm and Meelis Susi.

Photographer’s assistant: Marilin Leenurm, makeup artist’s assistant: Signe Uibo.