24 international artists take a look at the archipelago as a changing environment and a mode of life in the project Contemporary Art Archipelago.
“We didn’t want to take the artists to the archipelago to sit alone on an island and contemplate,” tells Lotta Petronella, the curator of the exhibition Contemporary Art Archipelago, CAA. The exhibition, if you can use the word for the 24 art works spread over several islands and even in the sea, presents conceptual works by international and local artists.
Instead of longer residency stays, which demand a long engagement of the artist, the curator arranged individual study trips for the international artists. The area is vast, it takes time to get around and understand the context. The curator has arranged meetings for the artist with local experts including marine biologists, farmers and the local inhabitants.
Together with the artistic director of CAA Taru Elfving, Petronella has worked on the concept for the exhibition already since 2005. CAA is an artistic research of the theme of the archipelago and its future as unique and changing environment and a mode of life.
The cross-disciplinary research into the environment with workshops and artist-talks is a central aspect of CAA, and the project includes collaboration with institutions such as Åbo Akademi University, defence forces, art academy and of course the local inhabitants. The processual character and collaboration are central elements in the exhibition. For the curator it has been important not just to drop down the art works to the islands as from the heavens, but to think through the actual situations that they will be met in, and let the works form through discussions.
The art works take the form of, for example, an island’s own mobile network, personal stories on the changing climate, cinematic sci-fi visions of the archipelago, underwater gardening or a frail meadow of glass.
The artists include: Alfredo Jaar, Anna Nyreen, Antonia Ringbom, Arja Lehtimäki, Armi Nurminen, Elin Wikström, Janne Gröning; Kalleinen, Kochta-Kalleinen & Andersson, Kari Caven; Kiiski, Isokoski & Palmu, Minerva Cuevas, Nanna Debois-Buhl, Nomeda & Gediminas Urbonas, Palletti, Pia Rousku, Platforma 9.81, Raqs Media Collective, Renja Leino, Renée Green, Sandra Nyberg, Sussi Henrikson, Tea Mäkipää, Territorial Agency Turku being the Eurporean Capital of Culture in 2011, the project has become a central part of the Turku 2011 programme.
Visit the Contemporary Art Achipelago website for more information.
Contemporary Art Archipelago has received funding from the Module for production-based activities.