Tallinn University Film & Media College

Location: Tallinn, Estonia

Year: 2009

Status: Competition

Size: 3,987m²

Program: Educational

Project team: Alver Architects (Andres Alver, Tarmo Laht, Indrek Rünkla, Ulla Saar, Sven Koppel)

Credits: Richard Avedon, Portrait of Brigitte Bardot. Scrape TV, Image of the Cannes Festival.


The campus of Tallinn University features a courtyard. However, in its current state, it is an area left over from the construction around it, rather than a designed “in-between” space. Now, this space is supposed to become the home for a Film and Media College.

As a solution for the new building of the College – a new addition of a “creative” program to the otherwise hyper-academic environment – Alver Architects propose a building that densifies the courtyard and thus provides a unique inner communal space for the university. The relationship of the proposed building and the courtyard becomes the main focus of the project.

The space of the yard continues up onto a public staircase, which simultaneously acts as entrance access and seating for outdoor movie screenings. After it reaches the platform on the first floor, it feeds into a gallery connecting the campus’s two main buildings. The lower part of the building provides a covered open space, which can be used as either a part of the Film College building itself, or the courtyard. The open space of the staircase with the cantilever hovering over it is like a muse’s welcoming lips, kissing the students and the space of the courtyard.