Arno Rafael Minkkinen (born 1945) is a Finnish-born artist who grew up and studied in the United States. For over three decades he has made black and white photographic works taking as his theme his own naked body, which is often combined with a landscape or urban space.
Minkkinen is a kind of wizard, whose works are at once witty, profound, humorous and poetic. He does not manipulate his works; instead, they are ”real”. Therefore, some of them are truly surprising, arousing feelings of wonderment and confusion in the viewer. Minkkinen’s photographs are masterly works in technical terms: real, old-fashioned, richly toned and beautiful silver-gelatin prints.
I have often thought that when Minkkinen began this series of works over thirty years ago he must have had truly great confidence in himself and his cause. A man who ran around naked outdoors and photographed himself must have been regarded as completely crazy. It is therefore a source of satisfaction to see that these works have become an oeuvre and that important museums and galleries all over the world want to display them and they are self-evidently considered and viewed as interesting, diverse and refined art.