Wednesday 13. June 2018
Elina Brotherus opens doors to a playful and strange world at Serlachius Museums, Finland
The exhibition playground / leikkikenttä at Serlachius Museums in Mänttä presents a new development in Elina Brotherus’ work. The photographs and video works from 2016–18 are humorous and adventurous and at the same time absurd. They take their inspiration from the ‘event scores’ of the 1960s’ Fluxus artists.
Fluxus artists were typically arbitrary, whimsical and absurdist in their work. These pioneers of conceptual and performance art used everyday life, chance operations and humour in their practice. Truly international, they opened up questions about what could and could not be considered art.
Elina Brotherus has worked for two decades with photographs and moving image. Recurring themes in the artist’s work have often been autobiographical or linked to art history as well as the interaction between the human figure and landscape. She has photographed herself throughout her entire career.
Brotherus adopted as a starting point for her work the ‘event scores’ developed by the artist George Brecht in the early 1960s. Interpreting these in her own style she has expanded the idea of a score, also seeking inspiration from film makers, poets, painters and photographers. In many works, she has collaborated with the dancer and choreographer Vera Nevanlinna.
The exhibition also includes new works, in which Brotherus partners with the sculptor Erwin Wurm and the Austrian avant-garde feminist artist VALIE EXPORT.
The result is an exceptionally rich series of photographs and short videos that turn a new page in Brotherus’ production. The exhibition, overflowing with energy, creates a link between artists over the decades. A continuum, extending from the past to the present, challenges the artist and encourages the viewer to reflect on the nature of art, history, repetition, authorship and interpretation.
Brotherus won the prestigious Carte blanche PMU award in France in autumn 2017. The exhibition Règle du jeu / Rules of the Game, associated with the award, was shown in the Pompidou Centre in Paris. A more extensive exhibition playground / leikkikenttä, continuing with the same thematic, is now presented at Serlachius Museum Gustaf. The exhibition is curated by Dr Susan Bright.
Elina Brotherus' work has been given prominence in numerous art and photography books and magazines. She has previously published eight monographs. In connection with the exhibition playground / leikkikenttä, a limited edition hand-made box is released in 250 numbered and signed copies, that contains all the exhibited works on separate cards.
Further information: http://www.serlachius.fi/en/exhibitions/upcoming-exhibitions/59-playground/
Serlachius Museums are located in the small town of Mänttä-Vilppula in Central Finland. The locality, which developed 150 years ago around the paper industry, has undergone an industrial upheaval, but it has risen in recent years to become one of Finland’s most important art towns.
Serlachius Museums are maintained by the Gösta Serlachius Fine Arts Foundation, which has been operating for 85 years. The foundation’s own collections include master works from the Golden Age of Finnish art of the 19th and 20th centuries. Through a museum extension, completed in 2014, the museums have also become a strong influence in the field of contemporary art. The timber-frame new building, designed by the Barcelona architectural studio MX_SI, has been awarded many international and Finnish architecture prizes. In Finland, Serlachius Museums has won the Museum of Year 2015 award and Finland’s Best Tourism Destination 2015 and 2016.
playground / leikkikenttä is open in Serlachius Museum Gustaf 16 June 2018 – 6 January 2019
Serlachius Museums are open in summer 1 June–31 August, every day 10 am–6 pm.
Requests for photos:
Serlachius Museums’ Information Officer Susanna Yläjärvi, tel. +358 (0)50 560 0156 firstname.lastname@example.org
Wednesday 13. June 2018
Dalí’s Gala is a tribute to the master of Surrealism
Dalí’s Gala is an installation presenting the master of Surrealism Salvador Dalí and his late output, and is based on the cook book Les dîners de Gala, which he published in 1973. Serlachius Museum Gustaf’s exhibition is a delightful tribute to an artist whose life and art are inseparable.
The Spanish artist Salvador Dalí (1904–1989) was a controversial figure whose merits as a pioneer of Surrealist art and the avant-garde are indisputably recognised. During his career spanning 70 years, he produced paintings, sculptures, graphics, installations, stage sets, jewellery, dinner plates, postage stamps, wallpapers and logos.
Dalí did not guard his output jealously; he often gave permission for commercial products based on his works. The numerous forgeries made of his art did not seem to bother him too much. So the world is flooded with his artworks, copies of them and forgeries.
The ageing Dalí took his art in surprising directions. In 1973, the French art publisher Felicie published in his name the cookbook Les dîners de Gala. This remarkable book has a total of 136 recipes. The recipes, obtained from the best Parisian restaurants of the time, are imaginative and luxurious. In 2016, the Germany company Taschen published a new edition of the book.
The book is illustrated with a series of Dalí lithographs, his earlier paintings, and photographs of the master himself at dining tables laden with food. The series of 12 lithographs carries the same title as the cook book, and to many people they are among the Surrealist master’s best printed works. The original cookbook is nowadays a collector’s item.
Dalí and his wife Gala also arranged imaginative dinner parties in real life. Wearing a unicorn costume, Gala once hosted a dinner in a huge bed covered with pumpkins while caressing an ocelot cub.
“We are fascinated by the ageing Dalí and the visual and cultural universe he created, which includes artworks, design objects based on them, trinkets and forgeries,” says Pauli Sivonen, Director of Serlachius Museums.
Most of the Dalí works and objects included in the installation come from the collection of the French Dalí collector Jean Amiot, who maintains his private Dalíneum museum in the small town of Beaune, situated near Dijon. A series of lithographs made by Dalí for the original cook book has been obtained from the collection of the Castellani Art Museum in the USA.
Dalí’s Gala is curated by Pauli Sivonen and Chief of Design Tarja Väätänen, who created the exhibition’s imaginative look
The Serlachius Museums are open in summer 1 June–31 August, every day 10 am–6 pm.
Pauli Sivonen, Director of Serlachius Museums tel. ++358 50 566 1355 email@example.com
Requests for photos:
Susanna Yläjärvi, Serlachius Museums’ Information Officer tel. +358 50 560 0156 firstname.lastname@example.org
Friday 18. May 2018
Serlachius Museums presents Belgian artist Koen Vanmechelen’s first solo exhibition in the Nordic countries
Koen Vanmechelen is an internationally acclaimed conceptual artist, whose practice ranges across all media from paintings, sculpture and video to large bio-installations, social events and public engagement projects. The extensive exhibition It’s About Time presents 31 works in different media both in the museum building and its surrounding park, including large expressionist paintings and sculptures made of bronze, marble and taxidermic animals.
The exhibition also introduces the Mechelse Maatiaiskana, the 22nd generation of Vanmechelen’s world-famous chicken breeding program, the Cosmopolitan Chicken Project. The resulting art work has been shown in exhibitions all over the world. It has also attracted growing interest amongst scientists. Each successive generation of the CCP has proven to be more resilient, longer living, less susceptible to disease, and less aggressive than the previous one. Lucy, on the other hand, is a Cosmopolitan Pig, a cross breeding of a Hungarian Mangalica and a Finland-born Duroc.
Vanmechelen works at the intersection of art, nature and science. Key concepts of his art include evolution, diversity, domestication, and cross-breeding. A profoundly ethical artist, he is concerned about the state of the Earth and a sustainable future for all species. In his work, he seeks both symbolically and concretely to open perspectives into a future where people and other species live in a state of balance. He also underlines the importance of the mobility of people and ideas and sees mental and physical barriers as threats to the development of culture and society.
“An artist is motivated by the desire to change the world, not by the power to possess it,” says Vanmechelen. He sees that the time of silence and contemplation has ended, and people have to act. “We need to start taking diversity seriously. There is no ‘in between’ anymore. We have to break the cage of monoculture, and this breathtaking museum in Mänttä seems to be the right place for that switch.”
The exhibition is curated by Timo Valjakka in cooperation with JSVCProjects/London. It is accompanied by a fully illustrated 144-page book with essays by Rod Mengham and Hanna Johansson and an interview with the artist by Jill Silverman van Coenegrachts. The book is published by Serlachius Museums and Parvs Publishing in two language versions, English and Finnish.
The Serlachius Museums are located in the small town of Mänttä in Central Finland. Mänttä, which developed around the paper industry in the late 19th century, has undergone industrial restructuring, but in recent years has risen to become one of Finland’s best known art towns.
The image of the art town is enhanced by the Gösta Serlachius Fine Arts Foundation, which has operated for over 80 years and maintains two museums in Mänttä. The Serlachius Museums are known for their important collection of works from the Finland’s Golden Age of art. Through the art museum’s extension, which opened in summer 2014, the Serlachius Museums have also become a strong player in the field of contemporary art.
Serlachius Museums are open:
10:00–18:00, Monday to Sunday during summer season, 1 June– 31 August.
11:00–18:00 Tuesday to Sunday during winter season, 1 September–31 May.
For further information, please contact:
Timo Valjakka, Curator, +358 (0) 40 548 4450, email@example.com
Susanna Yläjärvi, Information Officer, Serlachius Museums, +358 (0) 50 560 0156, firstname.lastname@example.org
Goele Scoofs, Process Manager, Studio Koen Vanmechelen, 0032 495 666 771, email@example.com
Friday 2. February 2018
Eija-Liisa Ahtila’s artwork Potentiality for Love to be premiered at the Serlachius Museums in Finland
Eija-Liisa Ahtila’s new work Potentiality for Love will have its premiere 2 February at Serlachius Museums in Finland. The exhibition opens for the public on 3 February. Ahtila’s three-part artwork is a hybrid piece that combines sculpture with moving image. After its premiere in Mänttä, the artwork commissioned by the Serlachius Museums embarks on a world tour.
Moving image sculpture in three parts
#1 – Angular video sculpture of 22 DIP LED modules (4K/HD; 8 min loop; sculpture size 614 x 384 x 15 cm)
#2 – Two research tables with attached ‘monitor mirrors’ (4K/HD; 4 min loops; size 100 x 72 x 54 cm)
#3 – Sound landscape with 3 directional loudspeakers and spot lights (3 discrete audio channels; 6 min loop)
Potentiality for Love (2018) deals with the potential for empathy and love towards other living beings. It turns attention to those human emotions that could serve as a foundation for dismantling the hierarchical structures between living things, thereby engendering a turn towards non-humans and the recognition of others. The work reflects the origins of these emotions, how we define them and how we conceive of their function as part of a larger continuum of living beings.
The first element of the installation is a hybrid work that combines sculpture with moving image technology to focus attention on the point where love is born. Using outdated LED modules, it recreates an image of a distant memory, of mother and the primal unity. It also touches upon the memory of loss and distance, the moment when the possibility for love that rests as potentiality, first emerges.
The second element asks whether our love and empathy is reserved only for our own kind, or whether we are capable of holding them towards other living beings as well. This question is approached by addressing the historical divide between humans and non-humans. This is achieved by creating a situation that questions what it is to be a human being and how the other, the stranger, is constructed in our culture. The medium for this is a modified situation featuring a setup similar to that used to treat phantom limb aches. In these two works, however, the mirror is replaced by a thin LED monitor showing the arms of another primate.
The third element of the installation approaches the theme by creating a sound landscape with dialogue.
Eija-Liisa Ahtila says that her new work differs from her earlier pieces so that the work isn’t a story that has a specific duration, but rather uses different elements from moving pictures and their characteristics, as tools to approach the motif. They range from things such as the creating of illusions, the ability of sounds to create emotions and the relationship of what is presented by moving pictures to experienced reality, and so on.
– The previous pieces and the process of making them led me to the question I could not avoid: what is it that gives us human beings the potentiality to turn our attention to others, to respect and appreciate other ways of living and other living beings.
Potentiality for Love
Cast Jenny & Matleena Kuusniemi
Written & directed by Eija-Liisa Ahtila
Cinematography Jussi Eerola – Edit Heikki Kotsalo – Wire FX Reijo Kontio - 3d VFX Jari Hakala – Audio Olli Pärnänen – Music Ville Ahonen – Animal supervisor Roger Farr
Commissioned by Serlachius Museums
With support from Avek, Biennale of Sydney, Frame, Finnish Cultural Foundation, Finnish Film Foundation, Kordelin Foundation, Museum M
Courtesy Marian Goodman Gallery, New York, Paris, London
Produced by Ilppo Pohjola
© 2018 - Crystal Eye, www.crystaleye.fi
Potentiality for Love -exhibition is open 3 February 2018 – 6 January 2019
Serlachius Museums are open 11:00–18:00, Tuesday to Sunday during the winter season 1 September–31 May, and 10:00–18:00, Monday to Sunday during the summer season, 1 June–31 August.
For further information, please contact:
Susanna Yläjärvi, Information Officer, Serlachius Museums, +358 (0) 50 560 0156, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Friday 27. October 2017
Jiri Geller’s exhibition FUCK THE WORLD! at the Serlachius Museums
Sculptor Jiri Geller finds his subjects in popular culture and combines them with new themes. At the Serlachius Museums on 28 October 2017 opens his exhibition FUCK THE WORLD!, whose works can be characterised as punk objects with their everlasting beauty.
Jiri Geller is interested in well-known, recognisable and visually tested images and symbols. Chosen figures, however, receive new roles in events that are coloured by unusual coincidences and comical encounters. At the same time, these frozen events momentarily hint at the transitory nature of everything.
An important feature of Geller’s art is US-derived customisation, which he applies in his unique way. Geller customises the familiar, recognisable popular visual catalogue and, based on it, makes new objects and images. By varying these elements, he dramatises new situations and encounters.
An astronaut’s greeting
Jiri Geller’s new subjects of interest are smileys and astronauts. Smileys he sees even as a new global form of folk art. Space, on the other hand, has been part of Geller’s catalogue from the very beginning. It is a spiritual space of escape or a possible alternative to this planet and its growing problems. The exhibition's title work FUCK THE WORLD! shows a natural-size astronaut waving his hand in greeting, but who leaves the viewer wondering whether it is about entering or exiting.
Rock music, related attitudes and philosophy are subjects that interest Geller. As a performer of rock music himself, he is deeply familiar with the comic strips, graphic art and underground publications associated with it.
“He experiences something of the immediacy and seductiveness of rock music in neon colours, which he has been using in recent years. According to Geller, neon colours create a distinctive, anarchist state of mind and make the works look better than reality,” explains the curator of the exhibition, Maaretta Jaukkuri.
A moment of bliss that lasts forever
Jiri Geller (b. 1970) is a silversmith by education, but he combines in his works both craftsmanship and digital techniques and production methods. Central to Geller’s art is making objects so beautiful that they, in his own words, produce “a moment of bliss that lasts forever”.
Geller was one of the founder members of the ROR (Revolutions on Request) group of artists, and he belonged to the group from 1997 to 2008. The group brought a whole new kind of energy and edge into the field of art in Finland, and they also exhibited internationally, for example at Manifesta in Frankfurt am Main 2002, the Venice Biennale 2003 and the Mori Art Museum in Tokyo 2005.
FUCK THE WORLD! is open from 28 October 2017 to 22 April 2018.
The Serlachius Museums are open in the winter season, 1 September–31 May, from Tuesday to Sunday 11 am–6 pm, Mondays closed.
For further information please contact:
Susanna Yläjärvi, Information Officer of Serlachius Museums, +358 (0)50 560 0156, email@example.com
- 13.6.2018 Elina Brotherus opens doors to a playful and strange world at Serlachius Museums, Finland
- 13.6.2018 Dalí’s Gala is a tribute to the master of Surrealism
- 18.5.2018 Serlachius Museums presents Belgian artist Koen Vanmechelen’s first solo exhibition in the Nordic countries
- 2.2.2018 Eija-Liisa Ahtila’s artwork Potentiality for Love to be premiered at the Serlachius Museums in Finland
- 27.10.2017 Jiri Geller’s exhibition FUCK THE WORLD! at the Serlachius Museums
- 26.9.2017 Elina Brotherus at the Serlachius Museums
- 19.5.2017 Northern summer and eternal longing in the Serlachius Museums’ Summer Days exhibition in Finland
- 15.5.2017 Artists of the exhibition Summer Days
- 31.3.2017 Esther Shalev-Gerz´s exhibition Factory is Outside opens in Serlachius Museums in Finland
- 3.2.2017 Riiko Sakkinen brings European refugee crisis to Serlachius Museums
- 4.11.2016 Marita Liulia´s exhibition Golden Age opens at Serlachius Museums, Finland
- 22.9.2016 Marita Liulia´s exhibition Golden Age to the Serlachius Museums, Finland
- 27.5.2016 Mark Wallinger exhibition opens in Serlachius Museums, Finland
- 29.10.2015 Helene Schjerfbeck’s work Robber at the Gate of Paradise to Serlachius Museums in Finland
- 2.10.2015 Major Anselm Kiefer exhibition to open at Serlachius Museums in Finland