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05 Oct 2009

Finnish Cultural Institute for the Benelux presents Calling Home in The Hague

© Raakel Kuukka: Irja's Story

Calling Home


4 October 2009 - 1 November 2009

Opening times:
Thursday to Sunday 1pm-5pm

+32 2 513 0419

Quartair - Contemporary Arts Initiatives
Toussaintkade 55,
The Hague,
The Netherlands

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Lou Galopa (FR), Paavo Halonen (FIN), Raakel Kuukka (FIN), Toos Nijssen (NL), Outi Pieski (FIN)

Calling Home is an international group exhibition of five artists. The exhibition focuses on the meanings and expressions of home and homeliness, particularly in situations in which the feelings of security and continuity are challenged or questioned.

According to American sociologist Kath Woodward, identity issues only surface when a person's identity is in crisis, for example when the permanence of home is shattered due to immigration, emigration, taking refuge, or a personal tragedy. Home is not simply a physical location – it can be a memory or a state of mind. In today's global world, home can be everywhere... and nowhere.

In their works, the artists of the Calling Home Exhibition deal with home-related themes in various ways.

In Raakel Kuukka's (b. 1955) three-image video installation Irjan kertomus (Irja's Story) the artist's aunt reminisces about the evacuation journey of her childhood, from the Karelia regions of Finland that were ceded to Russia. The aunt's story is juxtaposed with video material filmed by the artist while visiting her family's former home village, decades later. The roots of the work are personal, but the theme is shared by numerous Finnish families.

The building blocks of Paavo Halonen's (b. 1974) poetic art consist of recycled and used materials, particularly those found at the family farm in Eastern Finland. In the exhibition piece, the artist has used among other things wooden boat moulds and woodchips.

In her paintings and installations Outi Pieski (b. 1973) often uses traditional Sami symbols, items and materials, giving them a new meaning. Piilopaikka (Hiding Place), assembled from colourful blankets, resonates not only with traditional nomad dwellings, but also with the feeling of security and childhood memories.

Lou Galopa's (b. 1975) often humorous works are based on the artist's perceptive everyday observations in his own living environment. The works are often born out of materials found in a specific space. Galopa will compile a new piece for the Calling Home Exhibition during her short residence at the Hague.

In the course of ten years, Toos Nijssen (b. 1961) has compiled sizeable archives of video footage in which people, interviewed in different parts of the world, share their thoughts and experiences relating to the home. In the Calling Home Exhibition Nijssen will present a part of the archives.

The exhibition is curated and organised by journalist-critic Kaisa Heinänen, MA. It is implemented together with the Finnish Cultural Institute for the Benelux.

Quartair, established in 1992, is a non-commercial, artist-led exhibition space that focuses on new art and international collaboration projects.

Thanks to: the Finnish Cultural Institute for the Benelux, FRAME Finnish Fund for Art Exchange, the Arts Council of Finland, Finnish Cultural Foundation, Avek (The Promotion Centre for Audiovisual Culture), the Embassy of Finland in the Hague