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Let ceramics challenge you at the EMMA Museum

The newly opened exhibition reflects on our relationship to ceramics, clay and the environment.
Särkyvää-keramiikka näyttely EMMA-museossa toukokuu2021_elokuu2022_kuva_Ari KArttunen_EMMA_2021
Photo: Ari Karttunen / EMMA

The exhibition Ceramics Facing the New at the Espoo Museum of Modern Art EMMA offers a fresh, timely approach to ceramics, focusing on looking for more ecological manufacturing methods and utilizing new technologies.

The ceramic art works deal with environmental destruction and species extinction, conflicts and their consequences, disappearance and loneliness – but also the vitality of nature, connection and presence. Clay as a material is tangible throughout the ages.

The exhibition presents a comprehensive collection of ceramic works by twelve artists and two groups of artists, with Aalto's alumni, teachers, researchers, graduates and current students involved. The artists are Priska Falin & Helen Felcey, Veera Kulju, Nathalie Lautenbacher, Piia Lieste, Matias Karsikas, Tiia Matikainen, Meri Oivo, Matteo Pennacchio, Maria Punkkinen, Outi Savolainen, Caroline Slotte, Katie Spragg, Irma Weckman and the Working with Soil working group with Özgü Gündeşlioğlu, Catharina Kajander, Riikka Latva-Somppi and Maarit Mäkelä.

‘The exhibition stems from the long-term work at Aalto with ceramic material. Ceramics is touching as a material, it is timely and embodies the big questions of humanity today,’ says ceramicist, lecturer Nathalie Lautenbacher.

Concern for the environment and human impact on soil

The exhibition highlights the significance of clay for humanity while exploring contemporary environmental concerns and disintegration of social structures. The Working with Soil working group studies relationship between human and soil and consists of ceramic artists working multidisciplinary in design, art and science. The working group collects soil samples, analyzes them to determine contaminants and uses them as material.

During the exhibition an artistic research project on the local soil of Espoo is underway. In the project, the artists study the changes in the soil caused by natural phenomena and human activities.

The Working with Soil working group is coordinated by the EMPIRICA research group at the Aalto University Department of Design. The group was created for the Traces from the Anthropocene: Working with Soil project, which was on display at the Research Pavilion event organized by the University of the Arts Helsinki in connection with the 2019 Venice Biennale.

In the exhibition Working with Soil group collaborates with the Finnish Environment Institute SYKE, the Finnish Museum of Natural History Luomus and sound artists Noora Kauppila and Mikko H. Haapoja. 

Ceramics Facing the New is open at EMMA from 3 May 2021– 28 August 2022. The exhibition is produced in collaboration with Ornamo Art and Design Finland.

Read more:

Ceramics Facing the New at EMMA
 

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