Marika Mäkelä
Pre-Language
6 Apr  – 30 Apr  2017

I pursue no objectives, no systems, no tendency; I have no program, no style, no direction. I have no time for specialized concerns, working themes, or variations that lead to mastery. I steer clear of definitions. I don’t know what I want. I am inconsistent, non-committal, passive; I like the indefinite, the boundless; I like continual uncertainty.’ Gerhard Richter

Marika Mäkelä (born 1947 in Oulu) wanted the above statement by Gerhard Richter as the motto of her exhibition Pre-Language.

Mäkelä herself says: ‘It often seems to be forgotten that the essential thing about painting is painting. When artists work, it is obvious that they use their experiences, memories, knowledge and things they have learned – or they use them – to create something new. Painting is activity taking place completely on its own terms. The thinking of a real painter cannot separate itself from the material. The material also “thinks”, or at least has its own will. Painting, therefore, proceeds from the act, and the process of painting gives the works their unique visual visage. It is the result of a dialogue between – often partly unconscious – aims, pleasure, self-criticism, and the proposals or demands of the material. For the painter, this is a miracle that opens up the unique secret of the artwork.’

Marika Mäkelä’s manner of painting is precisely like this. She has something to say that needs to come forth, and can do so only through a completed painting. Sometimes, ‘when everything falls in place’, this can be easy, taking place as if by its own accord, while on other occasions it can involve a long struggle that will not necessarily end in victory for anyone. And then the painting will not be created.

But it has now: many, unique, magnificent paintings!

These paintings seem to be multi-sensory. You can climb, bathe, rest and find pleasure in them. You can feel their scent and almost hear them. And, of course, you can look at them, endlessly.

Ilona Anhava