Kuvan Kevät 2019: Young artists challenge the ready-made world

Kuvan Kevät 2019, the degree show for Master’s students of the Academy of Fine Arts of the University of the Arts Helsinki, will take place in May and June. The show introduces works by 51 artists who are about to graduate from the Academy. The participating artists show that serious topics can also be approached through humour.

The Kuvan Kevät exhibition will be organised from May 4 to June 2, 2019. With a record-breaking number of participating artists, this year’s exhibition takes place both at the galleries of the Academy of Fine Arts and in temporary exhibition spaces within the centre of Helsinki. Following the tradition of previous spring exhibitions, the exhibition does not have a specific theme; rather, all participants are free to showcase their individual artistic projects according to their personal wishes.

In the past year, people in Finland have become increasingly aware of the climate crisis. However, ecological awareness has been visible in the works of young artists for much longer. This awareness often leads the artists to make choices concerning the world of art. The young artists are not necessarily always interested in the artwork as a finished product, but in topics that affect art and existence more generally.

In Kuvan Kevät, the participating artists show that they understand the significance of limited resources by living in contact with nature in alternative places of residence, for example. The young artists are interested in the indivisibility of the human and nature, which shows, for example, in the ways in which plants and animals function in our common world. What is available in ready-made form has been challenged by self-made materials: an artist may keep hens, for instance, in order to use their eggs as a binding medium for colour agents, or grow flax to make canvas. In a sense, many artists consider the materials they use as collaborators with whom they can create an interactive relationship by working with their own bodies.

The young artists seek to understand themselves and the world around them. They introduce things for us to experience and consider – things that we had not recognized before or with which we had no prior relationship. However, as some of the works in this year’s exhibition show, it is also possible to engage with fundamental topics with a bold and humorous touch.

The works exhibited in Kuvan Kevät are presented at the Exhibition Laboratory and the Project Room as well as a temporary exhibition space next door to the Exhibition Laboratory. The exhibition also includes a screening programme shown at Cinema Orion, which includes a feature film and video works by four artists. Furthermore, the National Museum of Finland will open its tower for public – and for contemporary art – as it becomes the venue for a curated set of video works.

The following artists take part in this year’s Kuvan Kevät exhibition:

Elisa Aaltonen, Jyri Ala-Ruona, Jesse Avdeikov, Marko Backman, Sara Blosseville, Bambi von Bon Bon, Jessie Bullivant, Samantha Conlon, Cáit Ní Dhuinnín, Rag Elnyg, Maria Erikson, Johannes Heikkilä, HEMULOORDI, Eetu Huhtala, Pilvi Hyväri, Niklas Ingelius, Appu Jasu, Kalle Karvinen, Kimmi Kim, Saija Kivikangas, Kastehelmi Kollmann, Jaana Kähkönen, Tuomo Laakso, Santtu Laine, Astri Laitinen, Ilai Elias Lehto, Philip Lernhammar, Peetu Liesinen, Emelie Luostarinen, Celeen Mahé, Minna Miettilä, Camilla Mihkelsoo, Milja-Liina Moilanen, Vilma Määttänen, Terhi Nieminen, Jussi Nykänen, Jarno Parkkima, Emma Peura, Iida Pii, Jenni Rahkonen, Mariliis Rebane, Venla Roponen, Linda Roschier, Riikka Salminen, Astrid Strömberg, Suvi Sysi, Iina Torikka, Aarni Vaarnamo, Maria Valkeavuolle, Teppo Vesikukka, Haliz Yosef

Kuvan Kevät – The Master’s degree show of the Academy of Fine Arts of the University of the Arts Helsinki, May 4 – June 2, 2019

Exhibition Laboratory, Merimiehenkatu 36 B & 36 C
Project Room, Lönnrotinkatu 35
Open Tue–Sun 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Cinema Orion, Eerikinkatu 15
Aarni Vaarnamo’s feature film Sibelius-jatkumo (99 min.) and video works by Terhi Nieminen, Venla Roponen, Maria Valkeavuolle and Haliz Yosef.
The premiere will be on May 4, from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. The artists will join the event for a discussion.
Screenings on Wednesdays from May 8 to May 25 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. and on Sunday, June 2, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The tower of the National Museum of Finland, Mannerheimintie 34
Video works: Artor Jesus Inkerö, Azar Saiyar, Pilvi Takala. The exhibition is curated by Mariliis Rebane, and it forms part of her thesis in the Praxis Master’s Programme.
Open from May 4 to May 17, Wed–Sun from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Because of the unique location, only a limited number of visitors can enter the exhibition once per hour. Pre-bookings can be made on the exhibition website.

More information about the exhibition and the participating artists: www.kuvankevat.fi