Lumi antaa ajalle lisää pituutta – Ajatuksia ja kokemuksia pyhyydestä


What does holiness signify for Finns? Is it still needed? Is it necessarily religious, or can a secular person experience it? How do Finns experience the Holy?

In her new work, Lumi antaa ajalle lisää pituutta – Ajatuksia ja kokemuksia pyhyydestä, Salla Vapaavuori reflects on the idea of holiness and how we understand and experience it as individuals.

The work is based on an open online survey that Vapaavuori conducted with Professor Anne Birgitta Pessi from University of Helsinki. Vapaavuori has edited texts from the survey into a book. Three copies of the book, each of which contains unique paintings by Vapaavuori, form the core of the exhibition. In addition, visitors are given the opportunity to record their own views and experiences in writing. Almost ninety people answered the survey, surprising the artist by their large number. Many of the respondents took the survey as a challenge with no easy answers. The texts reflect many different world views: one finds holiness in religion, another alone in nature, one working as a nurse, many through music, in science, in art; in everyday life, singing together, in silence, or in death. However, holiness is a contradictory concept: who has the power to define it?

The artwork is an atmospheric installation that invites the spectator to stay still. The installation consists of private spaces where the viewer has a chance to contemplate their relationship to the holiness.

The exhibition is supported by VISEK, the Paulo Foundation, and The Finnish Cultural Foundation.

Salla Vapaavuori (b. 1984) is a visual artist who graduated from the Fine Arts Academy in Helsinki in 2011. Vapaavuori’s works are mostly defined by an idea, not by the technique. Often the works are poetic, reflecting life and its phenomena. Her works draw from the human mind and from the different realities and fantasies it produces. Vapaavuori is interested in inner worlds and how to demonstrate them with different forms of contemporary art – with text, light, sound, plants, or crispbread.

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