Mirza Cizmic’s works can be seen at the Project Room from 21 September onwards.

Autumn season at the Academy of Fine Arts: works by bachelor’s students, artist duos and painters

As the academic year of the University of the Arts Helsinki (Uniarts Helsinki) is kicked off, it’s also time to start the season of exhibitions and events at the Academy of Fine Arts. During the autumn term, art enthusiasts will be treated to solo exhibitions by young painters as well as art by artist duos. A new lecture series titled Avoimet opet! will also be launched this autumn to present what kind of artistic work the academy’s teachers engage in.

Exhibition Laboratory’s exhibitions feature bachelor’s students, artist duos and archipelago as a metaphor for identity

A total of 21 young artists will present their work this autumn in the Academy of Fine Arts’ annual BFA Exhibition, running from 28 September through 21 October. The artists are all finishing off their Bachelor of Fine Arts degree after about three years of studies. The BFA degree show is an interesting look into the world and art of young artists who are in the beginning phase of their exhibition career, all using different expression methods. 

The exhibition has no one specific overarching theme, and instead, each participant is given free rein to live out their individual artistic thinking when completing their BFA thesis projects. During the setup of the BFA exhibition, students will study the basics of exhibition practices, such as installing, lighting design, use of AV equipment and how to present one’s work to the public.

Solo or in a group?

Working in groups is integral to theatre and performance art, but working in artist collectives of different sizes is becoming increasingly more common even for visual artists. In November, artists Inka Kynkäänniemi and Iiris KaarlehtoOcéane Bruel and Dylan Ray Arnold, as well as Emma Jääskeläinen and Lasse Juuti pair up to delve into a topical theme at the Exhibition Laboratory – working as part of an artist duo. 

Their exhibitionHead and Shoulderswill present sculpture installations, which are the result of a work process that has blurred the lines of individual artistry. When it’s time for the setup of the exhibition, even the artist duos’ exclusive right to their own work is questioned.

All eyes on doctoral research later this autumn

Archipelago Mountain is a project by Stephanie Misa, a doctoral student at the Academy of Fine Arts, and her collaboration partnerAna de Almeida. The project revolves around Misa’s doctoral research, and it serves as a basis for an exhibition that can be seen in the Exhibition Laboratory in November–December. 

Artists, who have been invited to the exhibition by the above-mentioned curators, look for connections between landscape, mapping, and identity in their works. The focus will be on archipelago and the question of whether archipelago can be a metaphor for identity or an alternative description of it – neither consistent or permanent, but diverse and still one whole.

The exhibition will stay open also during the Research Days at the Academy of Fine Arts from 10 until 12 December. The fourth edition of the Research Days will once again gather everyone interested in artistic research to learn more and discuss a range of relevant topics with a variety of different hosts. The more detailed day-to-day schedule will be published later this autumn on the Research Days website.

Xmas Bazaar finishes off the autumn exhibition season 

Right before the Christmas break, students of the Academy of Fine Arts will be organising the traditional Xmas Bazaar on the weekend of 14–16 December. The popular bazaar is an excellent place to find unique gifts. So be there early and don’t forget to bring cash!

Young painters featured at the Project Room

The Project Room Gallery at Lönnrotinkatu will exhibit works by gifted young painters this autumn. Many of them have offered a glimpse into their production already last May at the MFA Degree Show Kuvan Kevät, such as Mirza Cizmicwhose exhibition opens at the Project Room on 21 September and who exhibited at last year’s Kuvan Kevät with his paintings on migration. 

The gallery will also feature works by Hemmo Siponen, Essi Kuokkanen, Mikko Luostarinen and Enni Suominenlater this autumn. Already somewhat of a tradition, the academy will be hosting a guest exhibition by students of Stockholm’s Kungliga Konsthögskolan also this year, this time taking over the Project Room in October.

Remember Tasku, too!

Don’t forget that there is a gallery named Tasku on the third floor of the Academy of Fine Arts at Elimäenkatu. Tasku is mainly dedicated to students’ projects. You can wish the new Professor of Photography Katja Eydel welcome to the academy by visiting her exhibition Appointed, which is open during the gallery’s opening hours Monday through Friday at 10–16 until the end of September.

New lecture series turns the spotlight on teachers

The Exhibition Laboratory also organises lectures and different kinds of events.

Would you like to learn more about the teachers of the Academy of Fine Arts? This autumn, you’ll have the chance to do just that, as fine arts professionals will introduce the public to their work on five Tuesday evenings. The opening lecture of the new Avoimet opet!serieswill be held by Vice Dean and art historian Johanna Vakkari (Ph.D.) on 2 October. The series is preceded by a pilot event on Tuesday, 18 September, at the Forum Box gallery, where printmakers Tatu TuominenandAri Pelkonen will share their thoughts on making art. Both artists are currently exhibiting at the gallery and familiar to the academy as having worked as teachers in the subject area of printmaking.

The Prognostics lecture series continues this autumn. The lectures highlight some of the trending areas of art, which not only challenge the established forms of creating and displaying art, but also shake up social norms and political thinking. The Prognostics lecture series is supported by the Saastamoinen Foundation.

Check out the details on the lectures from the event calendar. The calendar will be filled with performance art and other events, and the more detailed information can be found on the website.

Discussion series celebrates the 170-year-old Academy of Fine Arts

The Kiasma Museum and the Academy of Fine Arts are collaborating on a discussion series titled Kun taide sanoi nyt – kuvataiteen opetus 170 vuotta, which will offer insight into how contemporary art has established its position in society and how trends of contemporary art are reflected to the teaching of the Academy of Fine Arts and to the exhibition activities of Kiasma.

The discussions will be held in the Kiasma Seminar Room on three Wednesdays on 26 September, 24 October and 28 November at 17–19. Check out the topics and speakers from the event calendar. The discussion series is part of the Academy of Fine Arts’ programme in celebration of its 170th anniversary. Admission is free of charge. The discussions will be held in Finnish.

The two Academy of Fine Arts galleries are located north and south of Hietalahti Market Square. The Exhibition Laboratory is a venue for group exhibitions as well as for lectures and events at Merimiehenkatu. The Project Room, on the other hand, is mainly used for solo exhibitions by graduating master’s students and is located among the cluster of galleries in the Kamppi District. Admission to the galleries’ exhibitions and events is free of charge. The Exhibition Laboratory is accessible, but as for the Project Room, there are three steps up to the main entrance door (if you have questions or need more information on accessibility, contact: kuva.info (at) uniarts.fi.)

Exhibition Laboratory, Merimiehenkatu 36, open Tue–Sun 11–18
Project Room, Lönnrotinkatu 35, open Tue–Sun 11–18
Tasku Gallery, Elimäenkatu 25 A, 3rd floor, open Mon–Fri 10–16