Art Center Ahjo, Hehku -Space: Kerttu Ahlholm
14.02.-03.03.2024, HEHKU SPACE
Kerttu Ahlholm (b. 2001 in Eno) is a textile designer working with textiles. She graduated as a textile designer from Metropoli University of Applied Sciences in December 2023. She currently works and lives in Joensuu. In her studies in the textile industry, she has gained extensive experience in various textile manufacturing techniques and material theory. Through her weaving studies, she got to know the creation of textile art by weaving, and especially the exchange studies in Estonia increased her enthusiasm to learn about weaving and related traditions and culture. Ahlholm uses a wide variety of craft techniques in her work, but at the moment she is focused on using weaving in her art, where she is attracted by its practicality. When weaving, you can concretely see your own work as the result of a long process.
Ahlholm is fascinated by the interaction between human and nature, and this is how he wants to take the art experiencer to feel the changing nature, forests and terrain. The Kaarna series of works on display at Taidekeskus Ahjo has been inspired by the inspiring danger landscapes of North Karelia's home region and especially by the pines of the forests. The works were created during the years 2023 and 2024 and were woven on looms. The works descend around the branches one by one like a slowly growing bark. They are clothes that take shape on trees. In the vacation of the hectic modern society that produces more than its needs, nature grows under its own weight, at its own pace. Or at least that's how it should be. However, people with their actions affect its natural growth, generating unpredictable, even destructive changes. Could we learn from trees and nature, stop to feel and slow down our growth, life and actions and thus move towards more sustainable activities.
Ahlholm's Kaarna (Bark) works are on display for the first time at Taidekeskus-Ahjo, and since they are inspired by the local forests, they want to shift our gaze to the surrounding nature and its diversity. In her work, Ahlholm has used various recycled natural fiber threads, such as linen and wool thread and also copper thread. Ahlholm prefers recycled and natural materials in her work due to their durability and natural texture. With her work, she also aims to highlight the cultural heritage of weaving and thus contribute to its continuation. She thinks it is important to nurture practical textile skills in a mechanized society. Woven fabrics tell a story about time, place and their history.