Between Islands Saarten välissä – Mellan Öarna – Between islands is a cooperation between the artist residencies in the Finnish archipelago area. This summer the project exhibits works from five artists. The artists were invited to work in AARK in Korpo in May and June, and the works produced will be on display until the end of September.
Between Islands was launched when two of the residencies involved, AARK in Korpo and ÖRES in Kimito, found out they had launched in 2015 almost simultaneously, and residency founders, artists Renja Leino and Nuutti Koskinen, decided to develop forms of cooperation. Soon the Åland Archipelago Guest Artist Residence coordinated by Johanna Henriksson in Kökar also joined the project.
Thanks to this dialogue and cooperation between the residencies, artists have been able to visit other residencies in the form of residency exchanges, and a common production residency, resulting in the works exhibited this summer, has been realized. Five artists were invited into this year’s programme: Lilli Haapala, Elisa Matikainen, Grace Phillips, Maria Windschüttel and Marco Dessardo. Each of these artists has worked on the residencies involved before. The works produced are based on these experiences. The work of each artist is also revolving around the dialogue between humanity and nature, and with this year’s programme, the artists and the works are also put into dialogue with each other. Most of the exhibited works are placed in and around the Korpoström Archipelago Center, while some can also be viewed in Källskär (Kökar), Örö and Dalsbruk.
The project has been realized with support from the Swedish Cultural Foundation in Finland and the Finnish Cultural Foundation.
The artists and the works:
Lilli Haapala: Seeds of Utopia
Lilli Haapala’s work Seeds of Utopia consists of several small sculptures that can be found from the beaches of three different islands during summer 2019, in Örö, Korpoström and Kökar. Shapes of sculptures have been influenced by the forms of corals and seeds and they can be seen as golden sea seeds leached to the shores of islands, describing new ideas, dreams or opportunities. On the other hand, the works are like traces of the past, as well as fragments of valuable cities left under the sea. Lilli Haapala is a Turku-based artist who deals with the human relationship to the natural environment and to the other through her works. Haapala is currently working with a project called Searching for utopia, where she is focusing on different meanings of island phenomena such as paradise, utopian societies, dystopia, space and boundaries.
Elisa Matikainen: Plastic Rain / Sleeping Catastrophy
How far can microplastics travel, the unvisible plastic dust which is filling also our atmosphere? What if the raindrops find more and more often a tiny plastic dust as their core and the flying microplastics come down as a rain? What if one day the rainbow is ”made of plastic”? Numerous studies have been published on microplastic in marine environment, but we know little about these pollutants in continental environments. Only few studies are focused on the presence of microplastics in the air. Almost no research is being done on nanoplastics in the air and their impacts on human health and the environment. Elisa Matikainen is painter based in Kökar. Her work can be seen as a visual poetry, some kind of emotional expressions of being. Her work process is often a long and slow improvisation between drawing or painting and the different elements and details which she finds in the environment and the human life.
Grace Phillips: The Reach: An Erotic Dilemma
The Reach: An Erotic Dilemma is a live performance for Maria V. Vatanen (actor) and Emma Myllynen (kantele player). It is a brief window into the experience of one tourist as she visits an island in archipelago and wanders away from her tour group. The piece is derived from Anne Carson’s book Eros, the Bittersweet, and the hallucinations to be found on Örö Island. It comes out of a collaborative process with the performing artists. Grace Phillips is an american writer whose work focuses on the environment, both natural and built. A childhood in Montana and background in science inform her study of relationships through language. Her writing has appeared in exhibitions, film festivals, news outlets and art magazines.
Maria Windschüttel: LUOTO (Space Oddity)
During Between Islands Maria Windschüttel created several artworks for her long term environmental art project LUOTO – with chalk on rock, under and above the water. For the documentary of these temporary works she used fine art photography, combining interdisciplinary artistic layers to conceive one otherworldly narrative, such as seen in the exhibition in Korpoström. Maria Windschüttel is a visual artist working with painting, drawing, photography and environmental art. Based in Berlin, she is frequently reaching out to the Northern parts of this world – for inspiration and as work spaces. Islands are a great part of her life and works – the smaller, the better. She has been living and working for several months on islands in the Norwegian Arctic as well as on Kökar.
Marco Dessardo: PunkTerhi390
PunkTerhi390 is a compact sculling and sailing boat made out of the crossing of two crafts: a Finnish Terhi 390 plastic boat from the 1970s, previously belonging to the Korpoström farmer Reinhard Jansson, and a discarded Italian surfboard designed in the 1980s by yacht designer Andrea Vallicelli. Both were collected from Korpo, recycled, and made into a sculpture. Propulsion is provided by a square sail and two single oar systems, a Chinese ancestral patented yuloh and an original godille from the French Brittany. PunkTerhi390 was sailed by the artist in Korpo Retais in the Turku Archipelago before being installed at Korpoström. Marco Dessardo is an italian sculptor based in France. He likes to face projects with a limited set of tools and a selection of local material. After a reasonable moment of wandering and drinking coffee, he starts an intensive work process. The output is often unexpected, highly influenced by local context and his passion for boats. When working with boat sculptures, they have to be functional and are sea trialed by himself.