[:fi]Helsingin Taidehalli[:sv]Helsingfors Konsthall[:en]Kunsthalle Helsinki [:fi]16.1.–28.2.2010[:sv]16.1–28.2.2010[:en]16.1.–28.2.2010

International Finns in Contemporary Art at Kunsthalle Helsinki

The world calls out to Finnish artists and the Export–Import exhibition calls them back again. Kunsthalle Helsinki presents previousuly unexhibited work by acclaimed Finnish artists who work internationally. What are the advantages of internationality? What makes an artist international? The exhibition organised by the Finnish Art Society seeks to answer these questions.

Finnish artists have always travelled to Europe to further their studies and to work. Finland is a remote country, where the art scene developed fairly late and could not provide a livelihood to very many artists. Leaving home was a natural and sometimes necessary option.

Today, the “hot spots” of art move at an ever-increasing rate as artists constantly search for new things. Europe’s Mecca of art is currently Berlin, where there are also dozens of Finnish artists.

Travelling elsewhere is not the only way of being international, however: it can also consist of exchange, networking and hospitality. Artists’ residences have sprung up all over the world, Finland included: communities where artists from different countries work side by side.

Export–Import presents Finnish contemporary artists who have acquired their education in an international environment or who work abroad. What is it like to work in an international setting? Why have Finnish artists left their homeland, and what does Finnishness mean to them? What is the price of internationality?

Artists featured in the exhibition are Adel Abidin, Elina Brotherus, Minna L. Henriksson, Gun Holmström, Laura Horelli & Ann Kaneko, Hannu Karjalainen, Ola Kolehmainen, Pia Lindman, Robert Lucander, Kirsi Mikkola, Pilvi Takala and Kristiina Uusitalo. The exhibition is curated by Maija Koskinen, Director of the Kunsthalle.

An extensive exhibition book will be published, exploring the issues of nationality/internationality and artist mobility. The writers are Maija Koskinen, Marita Muukkonen and Riitta Ojanperä. 144 pages, lavishly illustrated, Finnish/German/Swedish.

Hannu Karjalainen: Nainen rannalla / Woman on Beach, 2009, HD Video, 5.32 min