22 Dec 2018



With HIAP artist-in-residence Linda Hofvander, Julia Schmid and Janis Mackay

Julia Schmid focuses in Helsinki on her artistic research into the presence of nature – fauna and flora – in urban areas, and examines how nature is represented in urban and rural environments today. “Therefore I look at ‘city –biotopes’ such as boulevards, small gardens, urban beds (accidently grown or planted by humans) and parks. I also analyze the representation of nature in cultural institutions such as museums of natural history, zoos etc. The work will be conceptually focused and realized in a variety of media – such as painting, drawing, photography, text work”, she explains her current project. Schmid continues also an ongoing series of drawings, which concentrates on wolfs and their display in dioramas or showcases in the museums of natural history throughout Europe.

Linda Hofvander will present some of her previous works, and talk about her process and sketches for new images. At the moment Linda is working on new images to continue the series partly on show at Hippolyte Studio in Helsinki. “I arrived at HIAP Suomenlinna rather unprepared in order to let myself be inspired by the new environment as well as Helsinki and Finland in general. The idea is to gather the images to a new artist book.”, she explains her current residency. About her artistic practice in general, she says: “I work intuitively and use simple, everyday objects in my pictures, while I constantly return to the photographic material of interpretation and reality. I want to move away from the direct use of the figurative and move towards abstract objects and surfaces that are only evocative of a narrative. The recurring theme in my images is the photograph itself – an image of inextricable link to reality, a treacherous truth document, and the embedded magic of the material.”

Janis Mackay is a writer, storyteller and creative writing tutor. During her time on Suomenlinna she has been researching and beginning to write a new novel for children. In this new work she hopes to bring together Scottish and Finnish cultures, characters and customs. In the forthcoming Peer-to-Peer she will tell more about this recent project: “In the peer to peer I am happy to share my thoughts of where a fusion might lie, and also to read a few pages of my writing on this subject. I have also been rather busy performing storytelling in Helsinki, and could say a few words about this very old and new art. I am also happy, if people have questions about how it is to be a Scottish children’s author, and what my research has discovered in the differences and similarities between the literary scene in Scotland and in Finland.”

Ferry from Market Square leaves at 11.20 am.

Find bulding marked with number 16 from Suomenlinna Map: Link