“Wood is a familiar material to me, yet it continues to be challenging. The better I get, the more dimensions I find in it. I alternate between painting and carving. The piece in the Ars Fennica show was made on pine board.
All walls of the gallery in Kiasma are clad with wooden boards. I wanted to create the mood of an Egyptian tomb in the gallery space. Although the atmosphere is ancient, there are modern people in the pictures. I’ve been pondering what a contemporary tomb would look like.”
Every detail in the piece has a story.
“I sketch my works by photographing. Last autumn I went to see the World Figure Skating Championships in Helsinki and took photos of the skaters warming up. In this work I also used photos of wrestlers I had taken previously.
What fascinates me in athletes is the notion of effort. A career in sports is a kind of condensed version of the human lifespan. One of the walls of the chamber is full of sports topics.
Every detail in the piece has a story. You can find a detail from a hand-painted wallpaper in Victor Hugo’s home museum, impressions of the ceiling in a medieval English church, a picture of a Pinocchio puppet, sheep photographed in different countries, and a Norwegian road.
Water is a recurring element. I went through photographs from my travels that I haven’t previously used in my work.
In this work I wanted to turn my gaze inwards and do something more personal than usual. I thought about moments when I have come face to face with death, as well as the ceremonies of death in my life.
It was difficult to make these personal pictures, but it was also rewarding. They turned out more abstract and mystical than the other subjects.”
Born 1979 in Tampere, Finland. Graduated with an MFA from the Finnish Academy of Fine Arts in 2005. Lives and works in Helsinki.