Photo: Frame Finland

Uniarts Helsinki graduate Erkka Nissinen at the Venice Biennale

In addition to the Research Pavilion, Uniarts Helsinki artists are also represented in the Finnish Pavilion of this year’s Venice Biennale. Artists Nathaniel Mellors and Erkka Nissinen present their first collaboration, The Aalto Natives, in the Finnish Pavilion at the 57th International Art Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia.

The artists share an interest in the capacity of absurdism and transgression to critique power structures and the status quo. In The Aalto Natives, they bring together Nissinen’s intuitive, do-it-yourself attitude to image production and his penchant for naïve musicality, with Mellors’ writing-based approach to filmmaking, and integration of sculpture.

Individually known for their irreverent and often comedic story-driven work, in which a humorous approach deceivingly belies a profound inquiry into contemporary issues of morality and power, Mellors and Nissinen in The Aalto Natives will focus on various clichés surrounding Finnish history and national identity. Erkka Nissinen (1975, Jyväskylä, Finland) gained an MFA degree from Uniarts Helsinki’s Academy of Fine Arts in 2001. Nathaniel Mellors (1974, Doncaster, UK) studied at the Royal College of Art in London.

The exhibition is curated by Xander Karskens and produced by Frame Contemporary Art Finland. The 57th Venice Biennale will take place from 13 May to 26 November 2017.