27.1.2024 - 25.5.2024

Hannele Rantala & Kari Soinio: Laskoksia (Foldings)


6/4 €

The exhibition Laskoksia (Foldings), featuring works by Kari Soinio and Hannele Rantala, explores themes of remembering and forgetting, change and loss. Different times and places fold into each other, with pictures carrying a memory or showing how they fade away. The photographs and moving images in the exhibition delve into timeless subjects such as loneliness, isolation, reminiscence, and trauma. The group of two artists and a curator has contemplated how fear and the refugee experience can pass from one generation to another, and how losses can transform individuals. Surprising similarities emerge in the visual worlds of the two artists, illustrating the impact of time on both human bodies and built spaces, where paint peels off walls, and hair turns white. Death is depicted as a presence in life, sometimes distressing, yet occasionally beautiful.

Hannele Rantala’s body of work combines photographs from two series. The first series, photographed in Patarei, a disused Soviet era prison in Estonia, explores restricted views and spaces of movement, surveillance, and control.. It captures decay alongside the wonder of colour. The second series of pictures depicts a dream-like parallel world to the penitentiary, utilising landscapes, and situations reminiscent of still images of a film. Nature, both alive and dead, is present in the photographs, alongside bread and water symbolizing life. Rugged cells intertwine in a private world that alternates between foggy and crystal-clear manifestations.

Kari Soinio examines how the loss of parents and siblings impacts one’s self-image and perception of the world. The themes of his photo series include the absence of shared family memories and feelings of loneliness, positioning loss as universal. Soinio looks at the camera—and at us, the viewers—placing himself next to things or objects that were personally important to deceased family members. He stands in slightly alienated landscapes or in a home environment that somehow carries a peculiar atmosphere. These images, representing moments of loneliness in the present, hold memories from his distant past. The lost world of family photos and past summers is as fragile as the reality of a mother adrift in dementia.

Leena-Maija Rossi, curator

Exhibition space with a big round window. Video screening in the space that has a screenshot of woman with a baby.

Kari Soinio: Laskoksia. Videoteos Mother – Beginning, 2024, Kunsthalle Seinäjoki. Photo Krista Luoma

Exhibition wall corner that has many small photographs. Behind the wall peaks a round window.

Hannele Rantala: Foldings, Kunsthalle Seinäjoki. Photo Krista Luoma

Hannele Rantala

Hannele Rantala (b. 1952) explores themes of identity formation, racism, temporality, and disappearance in her art. She has also incorporated performances where the feeling of shame plays a central role. The starting point of the works has often been people’s need to experience kindness. Rantala was awarded the State Prize of Photographic Art in 2022, when her works were exhibited in the show Vuoropuhelua (Dialogue) at the Ateneum Art Museum.

Hannele Rantala. Photo: Kari Soinio.


Kari Soinio

Kari Soinio (b. 1962) has focused on male corporeality in his photographic art. For over three decades, he has photographed the “hero” character on the ambivalent borderline of masculine and feminine. He has also studied the meaning of space for identities, changes and inequalities in built environments, and time in photography. In 2019, Soinio co-curated the Ideaalin Perilliset (Inherited Ideals) exhibition at the Finnish Museum of Photography.

In the works of both artists, questions of bodily vulnerability, the power associated with looking, the importance of showing and concealing, and the interpretability of history come to the fore. These questions are also essential to the Laskoksia exhibition.

Leena-Maija Ros

Kari Soinio. Photo: Hannele Rantala.

Leena-Maija Rossi

Leena Maija-Rossi (b. 1962), a researcher, has primarily focused on visual representations of gender, sexuality, ethnicity, age, and class in art and media images. She works as a gender studies professor at the University of Lapland. She has curated exhibitions in Finland and internationally since the 1990s.

Leena-Maija Rossi.