MAIN EXHIBITION SPACE
The Festival of Political Photography
February 3rd – April 29th, 2017
Food is not just a simple, basic commodity used to satisfy hunger.
This year, the Festival of Political Photography will present images that highlight the political, social and environmental dimensions of food. The environmental effects of the food industry and climate change are interconnected with hunger, migration, and wars. The global impact of food production and consumption on climate change is roughly equal to that of housing or transport. While a large proportion of the world's population suffers from malnutrition, it is estimated that one third of food produced in the world goes to waste.
While gathering around food and the concept of food, we will discuss the freedom of the individual in relation to society. Can we make a difference through our own choices, or have the decisions been made before we are offered the opportunity to choose? Tracing the structures and effects related to the production of foodstuffs is often an almost impossible task. The battle over knowledge, its control and distribution is one of the major questions of our time. Ethical questions about food act as links between the individual's choices and the structures of world politics. Choices are being made in the name of food about how life continues on our planet and the value of some people's lives over others.
Yet offering food is also an act demonstrating care, hospitality and love. A snack is a political act.
Photographers and associations:
Animalia, Greenpeace, Oikeutta eläimille
See more: www.pvf.fi
May 17th – August 13th, 2017
Sasha Huber. Agassiz: The Mixed Traces Series. Somatological Triptych of Sasha Huber IV, Agassiz Range, New Zealand, 2015
It is difficult today to speak of a cohesive Nordic art scene, or national scenes for that matter, even in the relatively small countries that comprise the Nordic region. But still we do every now and then.
For «Nordic Delights» the curators have discussed the concept of the Nordic region, as well as each country’s different art scenes from the 1990s onwards. What we have observed is that the art scenes, once they are represented nationally and in group exhibitions, still tend toward homogeneity.
We all have our own opinions of what Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or Finnish contemporary art is. The best example of a cohesive representation of Nordic art is probably the Nordic Pavilion in the Giardini in Venice, designed in 1962 by the Norwegian architect Sverre Fehn. The pavilion is Swedish-Finnish-Norwegian state property; each country owns one third. Every other year you can see Nordic architecture, or contemporary art as part of the Venice Biennale. But even here, we observe, Denmark and Iceland have their own pavilions next to the Nordic. How the Faroe Islands and Greenland are dealt with is unspoken. The system of pavilions in the Giardini represents colonialism and post-colonialism in the global context.
Group exhibitions, wherein artists are lumped together on the basis of domestic origin, are problematic. They often leave a bad aftertaste. While at the same time they constitute a sort of sample of what occupies a certain art scene during a certain period or time.
«Nordic Delights» can be seen as an attempt to break the homogeneity. The artists included in the exhibition all live and work in the Nordic countries yet most of them have their roots elsewhere. This time it is the so-called minorities who are in the majority rather than the reverse, which is most common.
Artists: Dejan Antonijević, Lilibeth Cuenca Rasmussen, Nermin Duraković, Michelle Eistrup, Behzad Farazollahi, Anawana Haloba, Sasha Huber, Jane Jin Kaisen, Henrik Lund Jørgensen, Bita Razavi, Bella Rune, Nita Vera, Adolfo Vera, Carla Zaccagnini
Curators: Marianne Hultman, Kristine Kern, Anna-Kaisa Rastenberger.
Nordic Delights is organized in collaboration between Oslo Kunstforening, Fotografisk Center, Copenhagen, The Finnish Museum of Photography, Helsinki and Kalmar Konstmuseum, Sweden.
Heikki Willamo: The Mythical Journey
May 17th – August 13th, 2017
Heikki Willamo has photographed Nordic landscapes and nature – its flora and fauna alike – for over three decades.
In his photographs he takes the viewer back to an imaginary and mythical time, a time before the construction of civilizations and their boundaries. Willamo places his photographs as a part of a millennia-old continuum of pictures of animals, they become inner images and visions, echoing myths and dreams where the animals take on different, almost shamanistic, meanings.
The exhibition is comprised of Willamo’s black and white photography, and contains a video of the artist made by Perttu Saksa.
The exhibition is a collaboration between the Finnish Museum of Photography and Salo Art Museum.
Elis Hoffman: Fading
January 13th — March 12th, 2017
The images in Fading were all created in small rural towns around Sweden – places Elis had never traveled to before. By staying close to home, yet taking unfamiliar paths, he opens the door to chance. Equally, the subjects he photographs are people he has never met prior to this moment: strangers, yet they also make up vital elements of a very personal journey – a soul searching walkabout.
By paying witness to events with a direct and honest gaze, Elis leaves the viewer with a sense of understanding, but without knowledge of the full story behind these vignettes that illustrate life and what is left behind.
At its base, Fading explores simple facts. Seasons change; leaves fall from the trees and die, winter moves in - everything is constantly fading. Spring arrives, restoring life and as quickly as new seedlings emerge, fading begins again. This is what Elis Hoffman pays silent witness to in his images - the exploration of the transitory nature of all things.
Elis Hoffman (b. 1979) lives and works in Stockholm, Sweden. After graduating Nordic School of photography in 2007, he has been combining freelance work with exhibition and book projects. Elis was the winner of news agency TT´s Grand Photo Award 2014 with his project Fading. Fading was published in 2015 by Kehrer Verlag.
Marta Zgierska: Post
March 17th — May 21st, 2017
In 2013, I survived a serious car accident. I was close to death, and reality – one that I had been adapting to with difficulty – slipped through my fingers. This misfortune brought about another: surgeries, months of physical limitations, a breakup, and the return and aggravation of anxiety neurosis.
Not long before the accident, I had found in my family home a teacher's descriptive feedback from the time I was a seven-year-old, exemplary student. I am still one in my adult life. However, despite the opinion of others, my limitations, shame and anxiety are still teeming inside me. I started taking the first photographs as a way of incantation of fear in an aesthetic image.
The accident brought my work to a halt. My mind was filling up with fragmentary memories, and sharp, detached details. My own physicality and pain became a source of images that felt more and more substantial and bodily as time passed.
Post is a project about trauma, frozen in dead greyness, silence and tension. Everyone can find their own punctures here – exhausting dreams, fears, obsessions. An individual way of discovering a twin traumatic memory in another person, Post is an attempt at intimate contact which closes the past non-experience in the present.
Marta Zgierska (b. 1987) is a Warsaw based Polish photographer. She is a MFA in Photography, MA in Theatrology and MA in Journalism. Her series Post has been selected for the Circulations Festival in Paris presenting the most interesting young photographers from Europe. In 2016 she won one of the most prestigious photography awards - Prix HSBC pour la Photographie.
Tanja Konstenius: Confirmation
June 2nd – August 20th, 2017
Confirmation (lat. confirmare) means to strengthen, reinforce, consolidate. For many Finnish youths, confirmation also means the ending ritual to confirmation classes.
Tanja Konstenius’ video installation, comprised of portraits in motion, is a representation of the Christian confirmation, and explores the phenomenon as a rite of passage. She examines how transition and change happen in front of the camera – how portraiture becomes a manifesto for change.
Tanja Konstenius (b. 1982) is an Amsterdam based photographer, who mainly works with photography and video portraiture. Her works often explore themes related to human identity.
Lorenzo Servi: Art Is Everywhere: Helsinki
August 24th – October 29th, 2017
There are wonders and beauty all around us, but do we really see it?
The exhibition Art Is Everywhere: Helsinki by Lorenzo Servi (alias SerraGlia) is a photo-series of objects, colours, shapes, and parts of the urban landscape that normally go unnoticed. Each image carries a story, revealing the unexpected in everyday life in Helsinki.
Truly blurring the boundary between what is framed and what is not, the exhibition invites the viewers to explore the city with new eyes, to visit and observe the city from an alternative, more curious point of view.
Part of the series has been recently published in the book, Art Is Everywhere: How to Really Look at Things.
Lorenzo Servi (b.1979) is an Italian-born architect, visual artist and designer domiciled in Finland. He is constantly researching and analysing issues in everyday life and built environments. Servi has been a part of several group exhibitions in Finland and abroad, among others in the Finnish Museum of Architecture.
Sofia Okkonen: Rose
November 3rd, 2017 – January 2018
”The woman does not speak, she is spoken of. The woman knows herself only through what is said of her. The woman only exists in relation to being desired by her audience. The woman does not dream of anything, but the perception her audience has of her.”
Rose by Sofia Okkonen is a photographic foreplay and profile of a woman. It presents a woman isolated in a studio, posing for a camera. The model is like an amateur actor, who gets the script just as she arrives in front of the casting directors.
The photographs are loaded with a tension, born from the discrepancy between the physical presence and the emotional absence of the model. The woman is simultaneously inviting and rejecting the gaze.
The works pose sensitive questions about how the need to be seen correlates with the need to hide, how lust correlates with fear, the natural with the artificial or the banal with the sublime. How does a woman perform femininity, and to what consequences?
Sofia Okkonen (b.1987) is a fine art photographer based in Helsinki, Finland. Okkonen is currently completing her MA studies in fine art photography in Aalto University, School of Arts, Design and Architecture. In her works she explores the masquerade of beauty and femininity. Along with her art practices she is specialized in fashion photography. On one hand the ideals of beauty ever-present in fashion photography provoke her, on the other hand she is inspired by the roleplay, masks and fantasies they provide.
MUSEUM'S EXHIBITIONS ELSEWHERE
At Helsinki Art Museum HAM (Eteläinen Rautatiekatu 8, Helsinki)
March 3rd, 2017 – July 30th, 2017
Five Finnish museums join forces to celebrate Finland’s centennial year 2017 with a major shared initiative. The Modern life! exhibition portrays Finnish modernism and its national and international success stories in the years 1917-1968. In Finland, this period was marked with fast-paced societal development: urbanisation, industrialisation and the ground stones of the welfare state. Modernism created and strengthened the Finnish identity. The era created a frame of cultural values that are still pursued.
The exhibition opens landscapes of Finland as a creative, bold and international nation.
Modern life! unveils the modernist movement’s strong belief in the future, as well as an excitement over scientific and technological advancements. In art, design and architecture alike, the past was dismissed to make space for new forms of expression.
Modernist architects and designers set out to build the world of today and of the future with the ideals of enhancing everyday life and purposefulness. At the same time, artists of the time led Finnish visual arts onto more abstract paths. Appearances at world’s fairs and success in international architectural competitions brought fame and glory to the young nation.
Modern life! combines architecture, design, photography and visual arts in a new and surprising way. At the same time, the exhibition is a story on the impact of diverse modernism on everyday life and arts in Finland. The exhibition explores the collections and research work of five Finnish museums – HAM Helsinki Art Museum, Design Museum, The Finnish Museum of Photography, Museum of Finnish Architecture and Alvar Aalto Museum – in a unique collaboration. Modern life! is part of the programme of the Finland 100 celebratory year.
Modern life! is organised at the Tennis Palace exhibition spaces of HAM Helsinki Art Museum. The architecture of the exhibition spaces provides a suitable frame to interpret modernism in a new, exciting way. The functionalist Tennis Palace is itself a delicious prime example of Finnish modernism.
The exhibition portrays the work of designers and artists such as Alvar and Aino Aalto, Emmi Fock, Vilho Setälä, Tapio Wirkkala, Kaj Franck, Eliel Saarinen, Viljo Revell and Timo Sarpaneva, Laila Pullinen and Eila Hiltunen, Wäinö Aaltonen, Vuokko Nurmesniemi, Anitra Lucander, Aarno Ruusuvuori, Sam Vanni and Unto Pusa.
The exhibition architecture is by Marcel Schmalgemeijer. A book shedding light on different interesting sides of modernism will be published coinciding with the exhibition.