Olli Keränen’s exhibition at Galerie Anhava consists of sculpture and a video piece. His work is based on observation; observations of forms and gestures in his surroundings. Signs, marks and human faces are condensed or reduced, crystallized into epoxy and aluminium sculptures. The works of sculpture combine a polished visual idiom with a connection with the world outside the walls of the gallery, the everyday environment. The works, however, enter into a dialogue among themselves– tracing the original sign and references to reality become secondary. Any misunderstandings that may arise between the artist’s interpretation of matters and the viewer’s experience and the interruption of the message are part of the process, even required experimentation in the hiatuses of language and connection.
Keränen’s video piece shows everyday actions improvised by a dancer, and reinterpretations of them. They involve in equal measure communication – in the sculptures through signs and in dance via gestures and marks.
Maija Luutonen displays large paintings on paper. The properties of paper – the white surface, porosity, planarity and lightness – have an important role in her works. For Luutonen, the use of paper is a study of both surface and material. Paper lays down specific conditions for the work. On paper, acrylic paint immediately finds its own configurations and therefore the gesture needs to be assured and fast. The study of surface and material has occasionally led Luutonen to treat paper as a relief, in which the marks of painting bring forth forms from the other side on the surface of the paper. Luutonen’s works deal at the same time with the two-dimensionality of paper and the creation of space. The flat paper is pressed against the wall, almost to be part of the surfaces of the exhibition space, while creating its own visual space with the aid of colour and perspective.
Keränen’s and Luutonen’s joint exhibition is also a dialogue between two artists. The questions raised in this discussion concern perception via form and colour, and observations of the everyday environment on the one hand and utopias of space on the other – while not forgetting issues of displaying works.
Olli Keränen (born 1979) studied sculpture and graduated in 2006 from the Finnish Academy of Fine Arts. His most recent solo exhibition include PROJECT at Galerie Anhava and SIC in 2013. The artist completed a public work of art for the Siilitie Metro Station in Helsinki in 2014. Keränen was awarded the Raimo Utriainen Art Foundation Prize in 2013.
Maija Luutonen (born 1978) graduated from Finnish Academy of Fine Arts in 2006. In recent years, her work has been show at on Gallery Bo Bjerggaard in Copenhagen (2015), Moderna Museet in Malmö (2014) and SIC in Helsinki (2012), among other venues. Her works are included Paavo and Päivi Lipponen (Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art), the Saastamoinen Foundation and the Lars Swanljung collections, among others.