Arctic Hysteria: New Art from Finland

June 1–October 5, 2008

A selected portion of the exhibition remains on view through October 5th.

P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center presents Arctic Hysteria: New Art from Finland, an intergenerational and interdisciplinary exhibition featuring 16 Finnish artists, that will introduce New York audiences to outlandish visions of aliens, utopias, animals, and psychedelia. Arctic Hysteria will be on view in the First Floor Galleries, Café, and Boiler Room from June 1, 2008 through September 21, 2008. In conjunction, Warm Up will present two major Finnish bands Jimi Tenor and Op:l Bastards on August 23. On September 15, The Museum of Modern Art will present a special screening of Electric Forest, a compilation of historical and contemporary Finnish video works.

Built especially for the exhibition, the Futuro Lounge is conceived as an homage to Matti Suuronen's 1960s design of the legendary Futuro House, and serves as a screening room for videos and documentaries. In the Corner Gallery, the severe and breathtaking installation by sculptor Markus Copper invokes the tragic sinking of the Russian submarine Kursk in 2000. An ice breaker, blinding snowscape, and a choir of twenty men together compose a documentary by Mika Ronkainen of the Screaming Men. In P.S.1's mysterious Boiler Room, Veli Granö's films introduce eccentric individuals who are obsessed with outer space and the paranormal. Tea Mäkipää's 60-foot long photographic collage, World of Plenty, is an ambitious depiction of a utopian landscape. A newly composed sound piece by Sami Sänpäkkilä accompanies this installation. In Mäkipää's latest video, the artist literally presents the world from a reindeer's perspective, by attaching a camera to its antlers. Nature also plays a central role in Anni Rapinoja's "couture pieces" where shoes, coats and hats are made from leaves and in Pekka Jylhä's installations that feature stuffed hares.

For their U.S. debut, the Pink Twins present a room of psychedelic video and sound pieces derived from various digital sources. Stiina Saaristo's black-and-white drawings combine overtly masculine and feminine body parts to challenge the genre of self-portraiture. Mika Taanila's film on Erkki Kurenniemi, a pioneer in electronic music, juxtaposes Kurenniemi's musical instrument DIMI-S and his swearing robot Master Chaynjis. Tellervo Kalleinen & Oliver Kochta-Kalleinen present a compilation of Complaints Choir performances, and will develop a new piece during a workshop on June 8. Jari Silomäki's ongoing photographic project My Weather Diary stems from local circumstances but addresses universal themes that are common to us all. Also on view is a tragicomic video diary of the dancer Reijo Kela, and two videos by the internationally renowned artist Salla Tykkä. Ilkka Halso's giant fantasy photographs, which suggest the union of the natural landscape and built environment, are presented in the Café and Lobby.



Alanna Heiss has organized numerous international exhibitions, including Dennis Oppenheim: Selected Works 1967-1990 which toured Finland in 1993. Marketta Seppälä is a distinguished contemporary art curator who has organized exhibitions worldwide, and worked with Ms. Heiss when she brought the ambitious international exhibition Animal. Anima. Animus to P.S.1 in 1999.

The exhibition is organized by P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center in collaboration with the Artists’ Association of Finland and FRAME Finnish Fund for Art Exchange.

The exhibition is made possible by the Ministry of Education Finland, Finnish Fine Arts Academy Foundation, Gerda and Salomo Wuorio Foundation, Alfred Kordelin Foundation, Finnish Cultural Foundation, Finnish Film Foundation, Arts Council of Finland, AVEK (The Promotion Centre for Audiovisual Culture), Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland, Finnish Cultural Institute in New York, and Consulate General of Finland in New York.

Special thanks to Artek for their generous and imaginative support. Additional thanks to Hanna-Kaisa Hirvaskoski, Mikko Nissilä, and Elina Nissinen.