Thursday, November 1, 2012

Äkkigalleria 17 - Images

 Äkkigalleria 17 installation view. Video work by Verena Kyselka Over water and Underwater in the foreground.

 Jude Griebel stands in the light preparations for Caro Trigo's performance.

Caro Trigo performs at the Äkkigalleria 17 opening.


Friday, October 26, 2012

Äkkigalleria 17 – In the Earth, In the Sky

Äkkigalleria’s seventeenth exhibition is a group exhibition on the broad and personal theme of death. Ten artists, from nine different countries present their own interpretations of the theme.
Äkkigalleria 17 exhibition presents part of the Dying Eyes project by Taiwanese curator, Yeh Chia-Ming (Soundbody Art Lab). The Dying Eyes project looks at individual interpretations of death from a large array of artists primarily from Asia and Europe. Äkkigalleria will show four video productions from this curated ensemble. Along with these media-work, Äkkigalleria 17 will also include painting, drawing, sculpture and installation from North America, Europe and Asia.

The artists participating in this exhibition:
Phyllis Schwartz (CAN) uses a very direct approach to the theme, using dead and decaying fish and marine life to create lumen (contact) prints. She also includes less abstract digital images of the remains found around Salton lake region.
Gregory Gléyot (FR/DE) uses his black and white photographs to look at death from a philosophical perspective, positioning the material and the spiritual at opposite ends of a scale.  
Adrien Millet (FR/CAN) shows a simple photograph, an ode to Mother Earth.
Taishi Nishi (JPN) presents delicate watercolours mounted on wood. His images are narrative frames from a larger story.
Jude Griebel (CAN) shares his recent project Isoäiti created during an artist residency at the University of Lapland. The installation project embodies personal stories of the experience of death, told to the artist and translated into sculptures and drawings.
Herwig Kerschner (AUT) After-Night (Nachnacht, 2009), depicting a dream-like night scene, in
the guidance of imageries symbols, implicitly revealing the absolute beauty of life
Verena Kyselka(DE) Drinking and drowning (Trinken und Ertrinken, 2003),Over water and under water (Oberwasser und Unterwasser, 2004) in a battle with her own East German past, but as a reflection from today's perspective. In an infinite loop that Kyselka is caught between the upper and the underwater world, on the border between life and drowning. The camera is filming under water, now and then will face Kyselkas exposed, the next moment, the water spills over. The result is an uneasy feeling uncomfortable, as if one in every sense of the word, "the water is up to her neck".
Chen Chieh-Jen (TW) Lingchi : Echos of a Historical Photograph (2003). Lingchi is the ritualistic form of execution, "death by a thousand cuts", practised by the Chinese right up until 1905 when the country's penal code was reformed. Chen's film is a dramatisation based on a single photograph of one of the last performances of the punishment carried out on a convicted murderer Fou-Tchou-Le. This work examines how little how insignificant a life can be under the big societal machinery.
Hsu Che-Yu (TW) perfect suspect (2011) an animation which will be shown in this exhibition, he fakes the crime scene of a fictional community news event, is the truth absent following the corpse's existence? Or the murderer is actually hidden in the media which creates the illusion of being? This will be a hard-to-solve mystery between the viewers and the real truth.
Caro Trigo (ARG /FIN) presents a new performance which looks at death as traces.

Herwig Kerschner, Verena Kyselka, Chieh-Jen Chen and Che-Yu Hsu are part of the Dying Eyes project curated by Yeh Chia-Ming (Soundbody Art Lab). These work are examples of a project which looks into how the subject of death is experienced and communicated through video art and documentary film.

Details and information about the exhibition and other events involved in the Maassa Taivaassa project are available on the ”In the Earth, In the Sky” event page: 
Äkkigalleria 17
November 1st – 4th, 2012, from 1-7pm daily (Sunday until 5pm), free admission
Sammonkatu 7, Jyväskylä

The opening will be held on Hallowe’en (October 31st) from 5 to 7 pm. 

This year, 2012, Äkkigalleria is the recipient of grants from the Art Council of Central Finland and the City of Jyväskylä. For this we are most grateful!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Maassa Taivaassa

At the end of October Äkkigalleria will be participating in a cross cultural exhibition series Maassa Taivaassa (In the Earth, In the Sky -Thoughts About Death) in collaboration with:
  • Huoma - henkirikoksen uhrien läheiset ry
  • Jyväskylän ammattiopisto
  • Jyväskylän kaupunginkirjasto
  • Jyväskylän seurakunta
  • Jyväskylän taidemuseo
  • Jyväskylän ylioppilasteatteri
  • Keski-Suomen elokuvakeskus ry
  • Keski-Suomen museo
  • Keski-Suomen Tanssin Keskus ry
  • Käpy - lapsikuolemaperheet ry
  • Luovan valokuvauksen keskus ry
  • Monikulttuurikeskus Gloria
  • Suomen nuoret lesket ry
  • Surunauha ry
Äkkigalleria will present a group exhibition including 11 international artists, more information will be published soon.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Äkkigalleria 16 - Images of Kirkkopuisto Photo Annual, Patricia Driscoll

 Photographer Patricia Driscoll in the Kirkkopuisto Photo Annual, opening, view with a storm at sunset.

  Photographer Patricia Driscoll in the Kirkkopuisto Photo Annual, opening view with a rainbow. 

 Photographer Patricia Driscoll in the Kirkkopuisto Photo Annual, opening: gate to the Valon Kaupunki event. 

Photographer Patricia Driscoll in the Kirkkopuisto Photo Annual, view from the western side. 

Photographer Patricia Driscoll in the Kirkkopuisto Photo Annual, view from the eastern side.
 photos: Juho Jäppinen

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Interview with Patricia Driscoll

Äkkigalleria interview with Patricia Driscoll on Friday September 14th, 2012.
Patricia Driscoll during her 2 week residency in Jyväskylä (photo Juho Jäppinen)

Äkki: This is your first time in Jyväskylä, and to Finland, you spent a day in Helsinki before taking the train up to Jyväskylä. What are your first impressions of Jyväskylä (and Finland)?
PDriscoll: I thought it was really smart. Everything was impressive.. and spacious. But it is also quite relaxed, and functional, it is all very high tech.
Flying into Helsinki there are these islands below, and the trees and the sea. And so the first thing you see is nature; islands and sea.
The other thing I found odd was how quiet everyone was. But I like that sort of quietness.

Äkki: Earlier you mentioned that you are not photographing the same things as you usually photograph. What and how do you usually photograph – how is that different from what you are doing here?
PDriscoll: I usually plan my photography, and I pursue a project over two to three years. So my work will revolve around planning it. Here I have to respond to my environment quite spontaneously. Here I am responding to what I see in Jyväskylä and I have to think of how I can fit my ideas into what is happening here. If that is possible.  This is probably a good thing because it makes you change your approach.

Äkki: Some of your work is quite political (A Means to an End). And some of your work appears to be more visually based (abstract landscapes coming from more natural settings). How do you bridge these seemingly different kinds of landscape?
PDriscoll: I was 18 or 19 when apartheid became redundant. During that time everything was political, I was affected by it. In a sense I didn’t want to deal with that at all, I felt I wanted to turn away from it, but it was always there, you can’t get away from it and it influences you in many ways.
And I think the abattoir series is not overtly political.
I think the way we treat animals is political, what we eat is political, but it is not particular to South Africa, it is a general issue. But in doing the work I did find out some interesting stuff about the particular places I went to. And a lot of the apartheid abattoirs are closing down, but they are being replaced, in some cases, by global companies rather than local companies; which is quite disturbing I think, because local is much better. So they are actually bringing in work forces from Ireland or other places and they are now competing with our local guys, which is terrible.

Äkki: What drew you to photograph in the abattoirs (slaughterhouses)? How did you get started on that project?
PDriscoll: I started in Cape Town. My friend and I did a project together, we were interested in where meat comes from. So we went to a supermarket and bought some beef but it’s all neatly packaged and we thought we would do a story on where it comes from. We went to the Maitland abattoir and we actually came across this amazing phenomenon called the Judas Goat, and that is really what we based our story upon, this goat that lives in the abattoir and leads the sheep into the slaughterhouse. So that is how it all started really, with the Judas Goat. But they don’t have Judas Goats any more; it has become more mechanized now.
Now this particular Judas Goat that we photographed, that abattoir closed down (another example of an apartheid abattoir) and it went to a petting farm. You kind of feel sorry for the goat but also it’s quite unsettling to think of all these children, stroking this goat, who don’t know what the goat has been doing.
I think the way we treat animals really reflects on how we treat each other, and I think we should think more about that. People don't think about it, I mean you can’t think about it otherwise you can’t eat meat. But it is pretty horrific, and on such a large scale. I mean I am not against eating meat, at all, but I think the scale of it is sort of scary.  The mechanization of it and the economics.

Äkki: Do you think having lived through and out of Apartheid in South Africa, has affected your work as a photographer?
PDriscoll: It’s difficult to see how, objectively, what could have affected me, but it’s definitely affected me. It just affects the way you see things. It’s a very difficult subject, and it is very emotional as well, and it is not easy to describe I guess, and through the TRC (truth and reconciliation commission) it was a highly emotional time for many South Africans, and I still think it is incredibly difficult.

Äkki: In Helsinki this year, all of the first year photography students are women. Thirty years ago the photography scene was dominated by men, as it is today in South Africa. Do you think there could be this kind of turn of the tables in South Africa? How do you see the future of women photographers in South Africa?
PDriscoll: I don’t think it matters too much, I mean there are a lot of really great photographers who are women, who are doing very interesting work. I think it is a difficult field in which to be a professional, I mean if you want to be an artist. But I think there is a lot of scope for female photographers.
I went to Rhodes University for a while and a lot of the students there were women, and I don’t know many girls in my class who have done well in photography. Maybe you have to be a little bit aggressive to do photography as a woman, maybe a little bit more aggressive than normal, I’m not sure. I don’t know.
I think there are more men photographers at the moment but there are quite a few females too.  

Äkki: What is your earliest memory of light?
PDriscoll: I think it was making daisy chains. As a primary school girl I would sit and make daisy chains with my friends, in the sun, I think that's when I really noticed light, spring and summer.

Äkki: And what about your earliest memory of art?
PDriscoll: that is quite a difficult one, I don’t really know how to answer that because art can be so many different things. Art can just be an experience or –, it doesn’t necessarily mean a picture or a visual. So I guess for me an experience: my first experience of art I guess, my first experience of fear would probably sum that up, but a fear that was exciting at the same time, so probably riding a horse, galloping for the first time, down a slope or something like that, would be that experience for what I feel like art can be. The sort of feeling of fear or anticipation, but with enjoyment.

Äkki: And now some one word/short answers:

Äkki: Colour
PDriscoll: Grey

Äkki: Process
PDriscoll: Time

Äkki: Explanation
PDriscoll: Infinity

Äkki: Message
PDriscoll: Return

Äkki: Object
PDriscoll: Subject

Äkki: Place
PDriscoll: Home

Äkki: Time
PDriscoll: Space

Äkki: Light
PDriscoll: Dark

Äkki: Movement
PDriscoll: Repeat

Äkki: Art
PDriscoll: Life

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Äkki16 - Taiteilijapuheenvuoro, Patricia Driscoll

Etelä-afrikkalainen valokuvaaja Patricia Driscoll esittelee omaa työskentelyään ja luo katsauksen etelä-afrikkalaiseen nykyvalokuvaan.
Tilaisuus järjestetään Äkkigallerian ja Luovan valokuvauksen keskuksen toimesta, ja se pidetään Galleria Ratamolla Jyväskylässä.

Ke 19.09. klo 18
Galleria Ratamo (vanha veturitalli) Jyväskylä

Monday, September 10, 2012

Äkkigalleria 16 - Residency with Patricia Driscoll

Äkkigalleria welcomes South African photographer, Patricia Driscoll, to Jyväskylä for a two week residency. The fruits of her residency will be shown at the very first Kirkkopuisto Photo Annual, at Kirkkopuisto, Jyväskylä, which opens on Friday the 21st of September at 6:30pm.

Patricia will give a public artist talk including her personal take on the current photo-scene in South Africa on Wednesday the 19th at 6pm.
The event is jointly hosted by Äkkigalleria and The Centre for Creative Photography at Galleria Ratamo in Jyväskylä. 

Everyone is welcome to join us around a cup of roiboos tea.

Wednesday, September 19th at 6pm
Galleria Ratamo (Roundhouse) Jyväskylä

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Interview with Camille Girard & Paul Brunet

Äkkigalleria interview with Camille Girard & Paul Brunet on Sunday May 6th, 2012.

Camille & Paul over looking Jyväskylä in the setting sun. (photo Juho Jäppinen)

Äkki: You are the recent recipients of the reputable Prix icart 2012, how has this sudden fame affected your lives as artists?
PB: The prize was a bit strange; it was more about the recognition and we were extremely happy to receive this recognition in Paris. So many people came and supported us. It was great. But nothing has really changed.
CG: It is a bigger prize to be chosen to come to Finland; more our style.  The competition was strange: the exhibition lasted only 4 hours. The jury came in chose the work and then it was over. But the party was really great, the students who organised the event did a fabulous job, and we are extremely grateful for all the support. But after the party everything is the same. 

Äkki: This is your first time in Jyväskylä and you arrived just in time for a very special Finnish festival: May Day. What are your first impressions of Jyväskylä (Finland)?
PB: well first of all it was a party.
CG: Springtime.
PB: Everything was just starting up, we met a lot of people, there were lots of parties (May Day, Graphica Creativa, openings) and we had to adjust to the climate. It was important to just walk into a store, for example, and look around. We did a lot of walking and looking.
CG: At home we don't really get out a lot and here we have been outside almost all the time.
PB: And especially because we had just spent the last 2 months inside working and drinking coffee. And here it is like a breath of fresh air.
CG: But our first impressions of Jyväskylä when we arrived; it was so strange to arrive here and find a city with such wide roads after riding the train through the forest and rural landscapes. But after walking around we can sort of recognize the landscape we saw from the train.
PB: It seemed like a really big city. With big block buildings, larges roads and a cold feeling. It is definitely not Quimper or Paris where the roads are so narrow and open spaces are rare, here there is so much space.

Äkki: Has your new environment influenced how and what you are drawing here?
CG: the last project we worked on everything was the same. All of our drawings were the same size, same colours: black and white and same subject matter. But those images were made with a specific goal for a particular exhibition.
Here, we have started a lot of drawings which we haven’t time to finish...
PB: we haven’t had time to finish YET, maybe…
CG:  ...but maybe they might just stay that way. And we have been using bits and pieces of found paper from here. When we work at home we know what is around us. Here we want to get out and see as much as possible and collect.
But I want to do something special with the gallery space. The exhibition probably won’t only be drawings. We don’t know yet…
PB: We have experimented with a lot of things here. We have just let everything go. No limits.
There is a huge part of the work, which is and will remain invisible. The books that we have seen here for example are present without being shown directly in this show. Everything that we have encountered has affected us even though it might remain unseen.
The subjects of our work are similar to what we work with at home, you can easily find a connection to what we are doing here. But the drawing is accompanied by a whole event. It includes music and food. We always want it to be more than just a medium. There is drawing, the object and the space in between.

Äkki: You have been officially working together since 2007 when you were still in Art School together. Do you ever work separately?
CG: Well, we don’t really do the same thing.
PB: Yes and no. We work together but it’s true, we don’t do the same thing. We share a lot of things but our perceptions are very different.
Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. It is separate and not separate.

Äkki: I noticed that Paul, you have been reading about Vatanen in “The year of the rabbit” by Arto Paasilinna. Have you seen Paasilinna’s Finland here in Jyväskylä?
PB: mm. I don’t know, good question. Vatanen is someone mythical like Jesus. It is as if he were real or was once real. I have gotten to know Paasilinna more than Vatanen.  His writing is amazing, it is dramatic and hilarious and then it also quite sad. Like the episode where the two people who are unsuccessful at trying to hang themselves meet by chance, and are so happy in their common goal to commit suicide.
But we are in the city too much to be able to tell if this place is as Paasilinna tells. I don’t think I am able to see it yet. Maybe I see it in the people, I don’t know it is not so clear. 
But of course I see it; something of it. 
If I met him I would quit drawing and follow him for the rest of my life. His spirit is completely different. The language is a huge barrier, here we are just spectators. Maybe I meet him everyday and I just haven’t recognised him. But on the first of May we met people. They looked at us in the eyes and talked to us in Finnish with their faces close to ours, and we just had to say “sorry we don’t understand”, but they just keep on talking. It was quite intense.

Äkki: What importance or influence does literature have in your work?
CG: No I don’t think so, it does in my life generally speaking but it does not necessarily have a conscious effect in what I do with my drawings.
PB: You (Camille) read a lot more than I do. I read more comic strips. But here we read a lot. So the literature is quite present.
Reading is replacing music. Here we don’t have music to listen to with us. But it must be an influence. A sensation.

Äkki: One particularity about your work is that you make it together, at the same time, sharing, trading on and off. How much do you talk or discuss what you are doing or going to do before hand?
CG: We talk. And sometimes we talk about what we are doing and it works.
PB: But when we don’t talk it is good. The drawings talk for us. If we could talk well we might not need to draw. Sometimes we talk about it after.
The most important thing is to make a decision. And when it doesn’t work it is because we can’t decide. When we talk we fight.
CG: No, that is not true.
PB: But, it is easier when we talk after. We have different perspectives: We say lets go to the lake and one of us thinks we are going to the lake to draw and the other thinks we are going to the lake for a walk.

Äkki: The other day you described what you do as an exchange; an exchange between the two of you and also between you and the public. For you, drawing seems to be much more than what is happening on the paper. Could you talk a little bit about your experience of drawing and what it means to you?
PB: It’s something communist. It is something which we want to develop in drawing and in our relationships with others. A way of trying to understand things better, we share a glance, a meal there are many different kinds of exchange. And everything, all of our interactions influence us.
CG: we spend a lot of time looking at other peoples work, not necessarily art, but we are enriched by that.  There are different kinds of exchange. There is a kind of exchange within what we draw: what we decide to draw, and how we draw it. And then there are also other people who participate in our drawings. Exchange is teaching and learning.

Äkki: And what about your earliest memory of art or maybe of drawing?
PB: “Les maitres du temps” a fantastic animation. It's a story about a space ship which crashes on a planet. There is a little boy in the spaceship who has a ball which is a kind of Walkie Talkie with which he communicates with the mother ship. He uses it to communicate with an old man, who really is the boy as an old man, and this man helps him return. I used to watch it all the time, there were such strange animals in the film. I didn’t really understand it and that is probably why I watched it so many times. I really should  watch it again because I am starting to forget some of the details. It’s a film by René Lalloux, a very magical film.
CG: when I was really young, my parents used to have a special arts afternoon for my brother and myself. It was really just to give us something to do, but those were very special moments. It was really very important, yet quite simple at the same time.

Äkki: And now some one word/short answers:
Äkki: Material
CG: objects
PB: ephemeral, feet on the ground, paper pen.

Äkki: Colour
CG: light (lumière)
PB: red

Äkki: Process
CG: duration
PB: procession

Äkki: Explanation
CG: confusion
PB: emptiness

Äkki: Object
CG: subject
PB: a lot

Äkki: Place
CG: landscape
PB: space

Äkki: Time
CG: speed
PB: travel

Äkki: Talent
CG: work
PB: aptitude
Äkki: Future
CG: welcome
PB: now

Äkki: Art
CG: love
PB: joker

Friday, April 27, 2012

Äkkigalleria 15

Äkkigalleria welcomes artists Camille Girard and Paul Brunet for a 3-week residency here in Jyväskylä. The artists will begin working in a former clothing store Kauppakatu 5 from May 2nd until their exhibition, which opens on Thursday May 17th at 5pm.

Äkkigalleria 15 will show a new assemblage of work by this drawing duet. The exhibition is an interpretation of life in Jyväskylä. Bits and pieces have been collected, mulled over and/or drawn by these archaeologists of the present. Wooden buildings, cars and trees; the view of garbage containers and melting snow from their window; budding flowers and coffee spoons; a rock, a button, a torn piece of paper found in the gutter: fragments and traces of someone else's life fallen onto the artists' path. The artists observe and interact with these objects in an open-ended exchange integrating these elements into their lives.
What have the artists seen? Do we recognize these bits and pieces? The carefully drawn sites and places, although realistic, could not be confused with photographs. But that is beside the point. These images are about the time spent with them in a slow and meticulous conversation: between the artists themselves, the artists and their subject, their environment and the space between.

The exhibition is open Friday the 18th of May until Sunday the 20th of May from 1 – 7pm daily. Äkkigalleria 15 will be open during Yläkaupungin Yö, on Saturday the 19th, until 9pm.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Äkkigalleria 14 – Images

 Installation of Äkkigalleria 14 work by Harri Pälviranta

 Tuomas Hallivuo installs his drawings.

 An aged exhibition guest pours herself a glass of wine from the vernissage bodybuilder's calf (Kalle Turakka Purhonen), images in the background by Teemu Mäki.

 Äkkigalleria 14 window reflections, work by Harri Pälviranta

view of performance by Kalle Turakka Purhonen at the Äkkigalleria 14 opening

Monday, March 5, 2012

Äkkigalleria 14

Äkkigalleria's fourteenth exhibition is the counterpart or extention of the Äkkigalleria12 (I'm on Fire) exhibition of eight Finnish women artists: Äkkigalleria 14 shows seven Finnish men artists.

The artists are: Tuomas Hallivuo, Anssi Hanhela, Antti Laitinen, Teemu Mäki, Harri Pälviranta, Marko Suomi and Kalle Turakka Purhonen.

The exhibition is open Friday the 16th and Saturday the 17th of March, from 1 – 7pm and on Sunday the 18th of March from 12 – 5pm.
The opening is on Thursday the 15th form 5 – 7pm during which Kalle Turakka Purhonen will be performing his Vernissage Bodybuilder. Everyone is welcome to taste the opening performance refreshments.

Äkkigalleria 14 – Minä mies
March 16 – 18th, 2012
Asemankatu 4, Jyväskylä

Monday, January 30, 2012

Äkkigalleria 13 images

 Residency artist Antoine Meyer installing his photographs from the Finnish forest in the carport passage at Kauppakatu 5.

 a view of Antoine Meyer's video installation.

Mind Less Company's Stefan Nyström and Kaisa Lipponen performed in Antoine Meyer's fictive political interview about "Kangaskylä".

 Antoine Meyer's forest installation in the carport passage at Kauppakatu 5.

 Antoine Meyer's forest installation in the carport passage at Kauppakatu 5.
a view of Antoine Meyer's cross cultural photographs installed at Kirkkopuisto. 

photos: Juho Jäppinen

Friday, January 20, 2012

Äkkigalleria 13 exhibition invitation

You are welcome to join us for the opening at Kauppakatu 5–6, 6pm.
This Äkkiresidency was arranged by Äkkigalleria in collaboration with the Jyväskylä Centre for Creative Photography.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Äkkiresidency interview with Antoine Meyer

Äkkigalleria interview with Antoine Meyer on Sunday January 15th, 2012.

Äkki: This is your first time in Jyväskylä and after five days in Finland, your first sauna and a snow bath, what are your first impressions of Jyväskylä (Finland)?
AM: It is not as cold as I thought it would be. And the snow angel, is a terrific experience! Suomi land seems like a place worth living in, especially when you come from a noisy and messy country like Belgium.

Äkki: How much have your expectations influenced your observation of Finnish culture?
AM: Very little I think, because some of the only things I knew about Finland were told by Aki Kaurismäki’s movies which have a fabulous yet real atmosphere. I only expected to feel that what is called North could become South in a few hours. And with this I am fully satisfied.

Äkki: And have you found the Kaurismäki atmosphere here?
AM: No absolutely not. And his last movie is a good example of that because it takes place in France and the atmosphere is very close. If his films would take place in Spain I think the atmosphere would be exactly the same.

Äkki: The Äkkiresidency differs from typical artist residencies in several ways, notably in the short length of time and in the nomadic exhibition space, how do these factors affect your working process?
AM: Twenty days is not so short! As a kind of nomad, myself, I just feel at home with this way of working. Looking for a place to make a show while working on the content is a very good way to meet the people and become acquainted with the place.

Äkki: We still do not have a confirmed exhibition space for you. How important, or what importance does the exhibition space have to your work?
AM: it is difficult to answer this question because what does important mean? Important can be so relative. As a permanent walker, the exhibition space primarily represents a break, but the place itself does not have a real importance; although it is the potential value of transforming the space which is significant to me.

Äkki: A lot of your work observes urban landscapes, compositions that are made from complicated or busy atmospheres. With careful choice of focal point and focus you have created very still, almost frozen moments out of chaos. Are the photographs you have made here in this same spirit, or has the less urban environment of Jyväskylä had a greater impact on your work?
AM: I would say that when I am discovering a new environment, a kind of ethnologist grows in me and I starting feeling more focused on having a comprehension of what is happening, than what I could do with it.  The works you mentioned were mostly taken in Brussels. It’s a lovely and quite chaotic city. These specific characteristics you have described are from places I know well, and have gone back to, they have been fine-tuned. But here, it’s a research and the result will probably look more “raw”.

Äkki: The use of light and colour in your photographs is very seductive. Can you tell me about your earliest memory of light and/or colour?
AM: unfortunately I cannot, because the memory itself is surrounded and invaded by photographs. Of course, these images were taken by parents and friends not by myself. But to give an answer I could say that my first memory is an 8mm film showing a pack of us kids playing around a construction site. All I can tell is that we had a pretty good time and a lot of freedom. About the colours, it’s the Fuji’s 8mm rolls of film tint is so seductive, I might have been influenced by these.

Äkki: And what about your earliest memory of art or photography as art?
AM: I think it is better to talk about my first memory of visiting an exhibition. This was Sam Francis’ show with huge paintings, may be about 10m high canvases, in the city of Toulouse (south of France). At this time, the Museum of Modern Art was still located in a temporary place and they had had to cut holes in the roof so that some of the paintings could fit in the room. I had only one question in my mind: had the painter himself been informed of this strange situation?

Äkki: Can you name a decisive moment in your career, when you decided to become an artist, or, consciously decided to make art?
AM: I spent some pretty boring high school years and I remember the day we studied the event of May 1968 (France) in history class. I remember the precise moment the teacher told us that we could not say it was a revolution because no one died during the events. And that day, I decided that I while most of my classmates would go on to become engineers, I had to make some kind of art.

Äkki: You have about two more weeks of time left in Finland, and you will be preparing a show of your work in a still undisclosed location, can you give us any hints about your exhibition?
AM: I will try to re-watch the Alfred Hitchcock film “North by Northwest” before...
In France, people often ask me the time in English as if I were Scottish or Irish. I was always considered as a Northern man. However, at school I first studied Spanish and I am glad that I am experiencing how it feels being a Southern man. But that’s my personal experience.
About the show all I can say, is that I am very curious about “sisu”.

Äkki: And now some one word/short answers:

Äkki: Material
AM: wood

Äkki: Colour
AM: blue

Äkki: Process
AM: printing

Äkki: Explanation
AM: silence

Äkki: Object
AM: scissors

Äkki: Country
AM: Uzbekistan

Äkki: Future
AM: social

Äkki: Art
AM: warm-up

This Äkkiresidency was arranged by Äkkigalleria in collaboration with the Jyväskylä Centre for Creative Photography.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Äkkigalleria 13

Äkkigalleria starts the year with an Äkkiresidency! Photographer Antoine Meyer, is currently in Jyväskylä until the end of January. Some time near the end of the month the fruits of his adventures here will be shown somewhere.
More information to come within the next week.

photo: Juho Jäppinen

This Äkkiresidency was arranged by Äkkigalleria in collaboration with the Jyväskylä Centre for Creative Photography