Tom Hunter, Susanna Majuri, Jyrki Parantainen: New Photographs 

20. Nov - 20. Dec 08 / ended Purdy Hicks Gallery

Exhibition | Photography | London


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Purdy Hicks is delighted to announce its second exhibition of photography from the Helsinki School. It includes a previously unseen body of work by leading British photographer Tom Hunter - who led a Professional Workshop at the University of Art and Design Helsinki - Jyrki Parantainen, Professor of Photography and its distinguished recent graduate Susanna Majuri.

Dublin Bay Bathing Places was made during Tom Hunter's residency at the Irish Museum of Modern Art. This remarkable series of pinhole camera photographs of the bathing places that surround the bay captures the ethereal light and sensual draw of the sea. Hunter quotes James Joyce’s Ulysses ‘A great sweet mother? The snot green sea. The scrotum tightening sea… Our mighty mother!’. Hunter’s grandmother came from and lived in Dublin and in deference to his own Irish heritage, the images in this series echo the womb-like shape of the body of water and are unified by a pathway extending into the sea.

Jyrki Parantainen studied at the Helsinki School of Art and Design, becoming Professor of Photography in 2006. He has exhibited widely throughout Europe and America.

The works are from his new series Horizons. He writes of the work ‘The line where land, water and sky meet is where our perspective ends, it is as far as the eye can hope to see. Beyond it lies a space where the imagination reigns. The horizon is not just a visual convergence of the three elements but a conceptual interface, the beginning of an everexpanding continuum of dreams and promises… The works in this exhibition are a series of landscapes, where the union between word and image plays a significant role. Words and sentences add new levels of meaning. They might politicise or poeticise. I use the words to forge a new identity for the landscape as I have observed and experienced it.’

Majuri creates narrative scenes, like film stills. She questions our notion of the real by shedding a new and disturbing light on all that looks familiar. Her subjects are anchored in places the viewer can relate to, but these places are associated with situations which do not exist in the real world. Her main characters, usually young women with their faces hidden, appear lost and dissolved in profound loneliness. Vivid colours come from her innermost feelings ‘I need colour to exist. I need this person, the place, the water, this touch’.


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