press release

Jyrki Parantainen's (b.1962) Dreams and Disappointments- exhibition, which forms part of the Helsinki Festival visual arts program, opens to the public on Friday, 18 August at the Amos Anderson Art Museum. The exhibition includes photographic suites from 2003-2006 and a light installation, Ich habe genug, made expressly for this exhibition.

Man's attempts at striking a balance between dreams and disappointments emerge as the central theme of the exhibition. The works portray the individual's relationship to himself and others, e.g. the understanding – or lack thereof – between man and woman, or a child's confusion in the face of expectations. The protagonists in Orientations stand face to face with their past, future, dreams and fears. In Pools – a photographic suite depicting abandoned pools – the images display a particular combination of melancholy mixed with silent disappointment and oblivion. In Historical Views human encounters in old, romantic prints are put under the microscope and analysed.

Parantainen uses the full artistic scope of collage, montage and layered pictures. Typically, his works display narrative, filmic and three-dimensional qualities. Texts and words attached to images combined with rhythmically crisscrossing threads distance the photograph from the object, making them all the more ambiguous and open to interpretation. Yet the artist focuses on the purely visual; the rich nuances inherent in photography; the power of colour and detail, its captivating magic.

The exhibition underscores the uncertain, random and sometimes threatening nature of life. Notwithstanding the tragic tones, the images' apparent romance and soft irony create a warm and hopeful atmosphere. In life, there is always the possibility of things working out just fine.

German art historian Andreas Vowinckel has written an article for the trilingual exhibition catalogue published by Helsinki Festival.


only in german

Jyrki Parantainen
Dreams and Disappointments
Helsinki Festival Exhibition