Post-Fossil Exhibition – HIAP Gallery Augusta
October 1st 2020 – November 1st 2020
1. Suomenlinna 1968 Seminar
The seminar ‘Industry, Environment, Design’ held in Suomenlinna in 1968 had a great influence on the development of Finnish and Nordic Design. The topics that were discussed in the event have a strong resemblance to the discussion that is taking place today regarding the urgency of environmental issues and the need for our society to rapidly change its course. Key contributors of the seminar included design theorists Buckminster Fuller and Victor Papanek. The material presented in the exhibition was provided by Yrjö Sotamaa, one of the organisers of the event and the chief editor of SDO (Skandinaviska Designstudenrandes Organisation) magazine’s 2nd edition.
Front cover of SDO Magazine, drawing by Timo Aarniala.
Strategic Questions / Five Myths, quotes from Buckminster Fuller and Victor Papanek
Back cover of SDO Magazine, drawing by Timo Aarniala.
Vitrine, books & magazines from the collection of Yrjö Sotamaa: Ruokaa vai raketteja, Georg Borström, 1962.
Gränser för vår tillvaro, Georg Borström, 1964. Plundring svält förgiftning, Hans Palmstierna, 1968. World Design Science Decade 1965-1975, Phase II, Document 6, John McHale (editor), 1967. Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth, R. Buckminster Fuller, 1969. Planetary Planning, R. Buckminster Fuller, 1969. Ideas and Integrities, R. Buckminster Fuller, 1963. Miljön och miljonerna, Victor Papanek, 1970. Turhaa vai tarpeellista?, Victor Papanek, 1973. Scandinaviska Designstudenrandes Organisation’s 2nd magazine, Yrjö Sotamaa (chief editor), Timo Aarniala, Lauri Anttila, Tapio Vapaasalo, 1968
SDO Magazine 2nd Edition, a reprint made for the Post-Fossil Show, 2020
2. ‘With Whom Do You Feel Your Solidarity’ – Social and Political Ideologies in Finnish Design 1960-1970 – Kaisu Savola
Design historian Kaisu Savola is currently working on her doctoral thesis (coming up in spring 2021) focusing on social and political ideologies in Finnish design in the 60s and 70s. The exhibition includes a few case studies from her research, which offer further context to the Suomenlinna 1968 Seminar.
Text by Kaisu Savola
Poster ‘With Whom Do You Feel Your Solidarity’, Aalto University archives
Photographs and Text by Kaj Franck Courtesy of The Design Museum archives
3. Post-Fossil Goals
The Post Fossil posters present the important key changes at HIAP regarding the three focus areas of the Post Fossil Transition project: Travel, Food and Energy. We hope that these can act as an inspiration for other (art) organisations. The posters were designed by Dana Neilson (based on HIAP visual identity by Tsto).
Inkjet prints, 2020.
4. Po-Fo’ Mobile – Paul Flanders, Dana Neilson
A three dimensional depiction of research that took place during the Post Fossil Transition project. The representational glyphs provide a shorthand for complex processes, behaviors, beliefs and serves as an invitation to conversation. Through balancing, hanging and rotating the mobile portrays changing perspectives and reference points. Deciphering its code of symbols is akin to the search for the best climate solution. The mobile hightlights the amount of information that needs to be sifted through to gain real knowledge and questions the heavy reliance on numbers and currency as the way to navigate towards a more sustainable future.
Tier 1: Abacus
Tier 2: Maps
Tier 3: Incompatibility
Tier 4: Inconclusiveness
Tier 5: Degrowth via decoupling
Tier 6: Horizons
Tier 7: (In)congruity
The Po-Fo’ Mobile was designed and created by Paul Flanders and Dana Neilson.
Birch plywood, CNC cut, pine dowel, rope. 2020.
5. Clear Fair and Certain – Elina Vainio
Clear Fair and Certain is an installation that consists of the title’s three words, moulded from dried and ground plants. Propped up in shallow mounds of sand, the small individual letters of the words will burn during specific days of the exhibition. The slow burning disintegrates the words and negates their meaning, while simultaneously releasing the scents of various plants, emphasising a future where everything is unclear, unfair and uncertain.
Elina Vainio’s residency in 2020 was supported by the Post-Fossil Transition Project.
Clear Fair and Certain installation; hand-formed letters from plants, accumulating ash, sand, glass, wood. Dimensions variable and changing. 2020.
6. A Coloring Book For Concerned Adults – Bita Razavi
The exhibition presents a few pages of a new edition of Bita Razavi’s work A Coloring Book For Concerned Adults, focusing on Finland. The coloring book statistics have been extracted from daily online news and other public information sources and placed in the book in the form of colorable graphs. The interpretation of the data has been left to the viewer. The coloring book allows people to choose their own color for the graphs and gives them creative authority over the abstract data. The two previous editions of the book focused on the United States and Estonia.
Illustrators who contributed with their drawings:
7. Saarilta: Huomioita Suomenlinnasta ekologisen romahduksen kiihtyessä (On Islands: Suomenlinna-based observations amidst an accelerating ecological collapse)
21.–25.10. and 28.10.–1.11.
Saarilta (On Islands) is an ergodic environmental essay by Saara Hannula & Antti Salminen. The essay takes the form of a site- and weather-conditioned multi-channel sound installation located outside of HIAP Gallery Augusta. It builds on a series of textual fragments that are distributed into five channels. Each channel is connected to a sensor that detects and measures environmental changes (light, temperature, humidity, wind, movement) in the immediate surroundings of the gallery: the data is then processed by a procedural algorithm that selects the audio files according to the input it receives. The sound system is powered by a portable solar panel. Thus, the composition and reading of the essay are contingent on the atmospheric conditions at play during the exhibition.
The language of the essay is Finnish.
Saara Hannula & Antti Salminen residency in 2019–2020 was supported by the Post-Fossil Transition Project.
Concept, text and installation: Saara Hannula & Antti Salminen
Sound design: Johannes Vartola
Programming and technical implementation: Auri Mäkelä & Ossi Mäkinen
8. Liveliest of Elements – Laura Harrington
Liveliest of Elements was developed from an elongated period of research into Northern England upland peat landscapes working alongside scientific enquiry. The starting point was to create a film that went beyond the view of such a landscape as a seemingly mundane and passive environment and reveals this supposed nothingness in its entirety. Through sound and image, the film curiously observes the landscape’s contradictory qualities; from liveliness and decay, bleakness and beauty, fragility and power. While the image maintains a human focal length the sound shifts between a wide expansive field and intensely focused micro movements and vibrations – the frenetic beauty of the micro with the haunting expanse of the macro.
Laura Harrington was in a residency at HIAP in 2016 and has explored peatlands in several of her works over the past decade including palsa mires in Utjoski and Joensuu Finland. The booklet Haggs and High Places that gives further information about the research and work process related to Liveliest of Elements is available in Pofo Library.
Liveliest of Elements (2015)
Single Channel HD film / 20 mins 57 secs with four-channel sound
Camerawork: Laura Harrington, Sarah Bouttell
Sound: Lee Patterson with field recordings by Lee Patterson, Chris Watson and Lewis Watson
Edit: Laura Harrington
dis/sonance – Laura Harrington
A composition of five voices recorded as a single take whilst on Moss Flats, utilising lines drawn from aerial photographs of the landscape surface as the score. Each voice takes a position of a compass, the rigour of measurement attempting to align and comprehend a non linear landscape, with the fifth voice occupying the place of earth, the depth, the unyielding tone of mass and richness.
4 channel sound installation / 6.06 mins
Recorded by Sam Grant at Moss Flats, 18 August 2015
Voices: Annie Ball, Jeremy Bradfield, Peter Evans, Susie Green and Cath Tyler
Sound spatialisation: Phil Begg
9. Mire Reception – Saara-Maria Kariranta, Riikka Keränen & Hanna Kaisa Vainio
When it rains more than evaporates and flows, a mire is created. Under a thick moss cover lies centuries of charged energy. Scent of stagnant water, invisible presence of methane. The installation contains an artificial mire made of plastic, organic material and water, the fossil layers of which can be entered barefoot. We are creating a temporal landscape using synthetic materials produced from oil – a landscape that reaches to the deepests depths of the mire where peat, time and energy sleep. The wetland experience carried out by Kariranta, Vainio and Keränen reflects their event of the same name at the mire.
The Mire Reception, held in August 2020, was an invitational event in honor of the restored Kempas mire. The artists are members of the Mustarinda Society and the event, which served as a complete work of art, was implemented in collaboration with the Finnish Association of Nature Conservation’s Hiilipörssi (Carbon Market) project.
Suomaalaiset working group is Saara-Maria Kariranta, Riikka Keränen & Hanna Kaisa Vainio. Suomaalaiset working group operates as a part of Hiilipörssi (Carbon Market) project managed by The Finnish Association for Nature Conservation. Hiilipörssi is a national project for restoration of ditched peatlands.
Ready made items, vacuum packages, biomass, video projection, audio material, thread, water, beeswax on fabric. Installation size is variable. 2020
Audio material by Elsa Lankinen.