3.03. - 15.04.2018
"Estonia, in political winds" by self-taught artist Heino Lillepuu
Heino Lillepuu was born in 1937 in Litu village, Ridala parish, Lääne county in West Estonia in a farmers’ family. He started school at Kirimäe elementary school and continued at Taebla 7-year school.
He had to go to work at quite an early age; he left school and went to a tractor drivers’ course in Taebla Machine and Tractor Station (MTS). In spring 1953 he got the tractor driving licence and started work at the MTS. In the autumn he was sent to Vana-Vigala school for combine harvester operators, which he completed in spring 1954. In 1955 he took part in the crop harvesting campaign in the Ukraine.
In 1957 he was sent to work to the “Külvaja” (“The Sower”) collective farm. Before starting work for the collective farm as a tractor and lorry driver and combine harvester operator, he also went to Tallinn school for drivers. Later he had the same jobs in the Karl Marx collective farm. From 1963–80 he worked as a tractor driver, locksmith and lorry driver in the EPT (Estonian Agricultural Technology) department in Haapsalu.
As his education had remained incomplete, he constantly strived for individual development, as much as possible, alongside work. He studied at Taebla 8-year rural school and later took a distance education course at Haapsalu secondary school no. 2, which he completed in 1969. Next he went to Luua State Farm-Technical School as a distance learner but, unfortunately, did not take the state examination and so he left without a qualification. From 1981–86 Heino Lillepuu worked in Saaremaa, and from 1986 in Pärnu county, Suigu collective farm as a plumber. From 1996 to retirement in 1999, he worked as a woodworker and landscaping assistant in Pärnu municipal services department.
He had two children by his first wife, a daughter and a son. His daughter died in fire in 1998. Beside art, his hobbies included woodwork and crafts, as well as ice fishing. Heino Lillepuu was always interested in political events. So he recorded Estonia’s recent history in a series of coloured pictures. His first solo exhibition took place in the Museum of New Art in Pärnu in spring 2004. In winter 2005, he had an exhibition in the Estonian parliament building.
Heino Lillepuu died in 2013.
In 2017, Heino Lillepuu’s relatives donated a few hundred unique works of art by Heino Lillepuu, depicting the Estonian heroes and history, to the Kondas Centre.