Kalle Lampela | Postgraduate student in the Faculty of Art and
"Sohva": first exhibition for artistic component, autumn 2008.
The concept of the exhibition had to do with the idea of presence. I spent 108 hours in Lapland University's Gallery Katve, in which I placed an old leather couch, an unfinished oil painting, five metres of paper, some sketch books, research literature and a few of my own pieces. On the first morning of the exhibition I taped the borders of a large rectangle and painted the area inside with light brown latex. I projected an extract of text by Hanna Arendt onto the rectangle and started painting the text as a negative.
Although the artistic part of my research project clearly contributes in an empirical way to the body of my research as a whole, the motive behind the realisation of the exhibition was not an empirical need but rather the feeling of bewilderment which has driven me to pursue the creation of dialogue, as is seen in much contemporary art. This piece is about creating a directional space in which performativity and interaction can occur and leave traces in the memory. The most meaningful type of political-aesthetic form of expression that I have experienced aligns itself with theories on autonomy and criticism of productisation.
A major theme in the work of artists I interviewed, as well as in my own work, is commitment. My commitment to certain theories of autonomy, conceptions of art and ideological and scientific systems, are all evident in the exhibitions I have produced and the forms of expression and research literature I have chosen. These areas of commitment are furthermore indicative of my political and societal commitments. I operate on the premise that neutrality is impossible in a politically mediated world where people have to cooperate with one another.
The written material in the "Sohva" exhibition came from the many interesting conversations I had with visitors to the exhibition. By having my exhibition in the University's own gallery I openly exposed myself and my whole research project to criticism. I received comments and suggestions for development in light of which I will move to the next phase of my research.
The artistic component of my research includes two more exhibitions, of which the first will take place in 2010.