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Art Center Ahjo, Sysi Hall and Kytö/Liekki-mediaroom: Pertti Karjalainen

”It is time to harvest the crop of the years”, Karjalainen states.

“Part of my exhibition is based on my view of Russia, a different view from what the country’s ruler Putin has. About half of my works are based in different ways in my experiences of different regions of Russia. When I was creating the exhibition it was hard to believe how the situation in Ukraine was developing. Now that we know what cruelty the Russian regime is doing in the country, the shock is great. I name my UV light work “The Garden” in the exhibition as a tribute to the brave struggle of the Ukrainian people for the freedom of their own country. ”

Visual artist Pertti Karjalainen has traveled a long distance from the Taimyr and Yamal Peninsula to St. Petersburg and elsewhere in Russia and has occasionally returned to his residential area in Central Finland. Trips have been shorter visits or longer stops. During his travels he has lived and worked e.g. with the Nenets reindeer herders, worked in residencies in St. Petersburg for several periods and sometimes returned to Jyväskylä to work on what they saw and experienced.

The works have taken the form of paintings of different sizes, collages, photo-based portraits and UV light works. The language of Karelian expression speaks through color as abstract large-scale paintings, as well as smaller observational studies.