Lehmä pitää viedä jäälle, jotta se tanssii - For the Cow to Dance, Drag it on the Ice - Exhibition of art from Finland 10. June 2017 - 19. August 2017

About the exhibition

From June 10 to August 19, 2017, Samuelis Baumgarte Gallery presents "Lehmä pitää viedä jäälle, jotta se tanssii" ("The Cow Must Go on Ice to Dance"), a broad survey exhibition of contemporary art from Finland. Thirty-two artists of all active age cohorts represent various currents in the art practice of this Northern European country increasingly present in the international art discourse.

The vernissage will take place on June 10, 2017 at 5pm.

In its cross-generational and cross-media layout, the exhibition delivers penetrating cuts along multiple conceptual, temporal, and social dimensions that reflect the vibrant complexity of Finnish society. We encounter a culture that in just one hundred years has gone from an agrarian economy to one of the best educated and most highly technologized societies in digital globalism. The mass of inconsistencies and dislocations that work vividly in the mental cartography of contemporary generations, thanks to this breakneck development, is reflected in the form of conceptual hybridities, blatant ruptures or interpenetrations of seemingly incompatible things.

In "Lehmä pitää viedä jäälle, jotta se tanssii" these tensions appear as signs of an existentially driven self-examination on the one hand and a search for localization in the world on the other. Just as in Jarmo Mäkilä's work (e.g., "Kotipiha" 2017, oil on canvas, 150 × 120 cm), being an offbeat, parentlessly unregulated young person in the gloom of the forest, raises the question of our inner monstrosity and its present slumbering place, Jaakko Pallasvuo's video "MASK" (2017, HD video with sound, 6:29 min) casts doubt on any trait-location as being in a "self." Heli Rekula's long-term project "In Hemingway's Garden" (in the exhibition, e.g., "Garden 6 (Hockney blue)" 2012, C-print diasec, 160 × 200 cm) searches for the imprints of experienced life on the silhouette of one's own, while Elina Brotherus in her photographs (e.g.. e.g. "L'automne, dans le Morvan" 2011, pigment ink print, 90 × 120 cm from the series "12 ans après") stages herself as a Heisenbergian distorting instrument in the perception of autobiographical or historical situation. Kaisu Koivisto encounters comparably historical contexts with light-heartedly improvising observation (e.g. "Open Hand" 2016, steel, 258 × 85 × 70 cm), which power also manifests itself in the lusty ceramics and wooden sculptures of Emma Helle (e.g. E.g. "Foibe" 2012, tempera on red pine, height ca. 160 cm) or Kari Cavén's mischievous assemblages (e.g. "Cry and Whispers" 2016, Brio wooden rails, 190 × 100 cm).

Thus, our relationship to the natural or cultural environment is conceived in ways as varied as Timo Wright's work "A Feast With King Midas," which exhorts position-taking in the face of human and ecological crises (2013, HD video, 3:45 min). Mikko Rikala's as subtle as profound looks at movement and time (e.g. "Shadow of a Bird on Marble" 2016, pigment print, diptych, 40 × 30 cm each,) or Grönlund Nisunen's work "Flow of Matter", which like all her installations exudes a like childlike curiosity and fascination for phenomena of the physis of our earth (2013, div. materials and electronics, 35 × 140 × 140 cm).

"Lehmä pitää viedä jäälle, jotta se tanssii" offers an unprecedented presentation of art from Finland in its conceptual breadth, temporal depth, and discussion-oriented assembly of artistic positions, which we hope will foster a lively, ongoing, and insightful exchange between Finland and Germany.

The exhibition is open from Monday to Friday from 10:00 to 18:00 and on Saturday from 10:00 to 14:00.


Opening: June 10th, 2017, 5 p.m.

Introduction: Martin Born, curator and designer, Helsinki


Artists will be present.

Online Katalog

Online Katalog

Past exhibitions