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Ghosts of Gesture - Il Movimento Fantasma
Behind the development of the project are personal reasons that have to do with the past and the women in my family. Hundred years ago educational and self-expressive opportunities for girls and women were slim and could not be taken for granted only because of their gender.
Projektin synnyn taustalla vaikuttavat vahvasti henkilökohtaiset mennei-syyteen ja suvun naisiin liittyvät seikat. Sata vuotta sitten varsinkaan tyttöjen pääsy opintielle ei ollut itsestäänselvyys. Lahjakas, opinhaluinen
nuori ei ehkä voinut toteuttaa unelmiaan vain siksi, että oli tyttö.
Photographs and moving image work
"The post-modern subject has no fixed, essential, or permanent identity. Identity becomes a "movable feast": formed and transformed continuously in relation to the ways we are represented or addressed in the cultural systems which surround us. It is historically definied. The subject assumes different identities at different times. WIthin us are contradictory identities pulling in different directions, so that our identifications are continuously being shifted about." (Stuart Hall)
The performative Ghosts of Gesture/Il Movimento Fantasma explores movement in frozen time, imaginary memories and play of identities. Metsähuone performs a dual role of a photographer and a person being photographed dressed in vintage dresses.
The idea and inspiration for positioning the portrait series in the early 20th century has been the women's suffrage movement activists who campaigned for womens' rights and gender equality. The series is a fictional interpretation of a woman during ambiguous times and does not aim for historical authenticity.
Through the portrait series she studies a woman's role, gestures and expressions. The project includes a narrative photo series and a non-linear non-narrative experimental short film. The project has been shot in Italy during several years.
Metsähuone photographs film-like story fragments, moments without a beginning or an end except in the viewer's mind. Scenes that exist only that fraction of a time it takes to photograph them.
The aim of the project is not to create a believable illusion of another reality. In the photos she is both herself and the unknown other, in the present and in the past. Identities mix and overlap, she engages in dialog with herself and with the unfamiliar other.
Metsähuone examines emotional states, their developments and transformations which can be reconstructed and conveyed through gestures and movements.
Gestures, emotions and expressions are provoked by imaginary memories and situations in which she places herself in the role of being photographed. Ghosts of Gesture mirrors the established gestures through which gender identity is represented and with which gender is reproduced and recognized.
Metsähuone also explores the change in movement and time: illusion of movement, repetition, rhythm and tracing movement.
2012: Ghosts of Gesture photographs are shown for the first time in Rome, Italy in an international photo exhibition Obiettivi Obiettività at Fotografiche Associazione Culturale and also at Gallery Katariina with Finnish National Gallery Ateneum Art Museum in Helsinki, Finland celebrating Finnish artist Helene Schjerfbeck's 150th anniversary.
2013: Ghost of Gesture project in a solo show at Gallery Jangva in Helsinki, Finland. 2014: Ghosts of Gesture project's photo based moving image work presented at the Sardinia Film Festival.
2014 and 2015: Metsähuone represents Finland with Ghosts of Gesture series in '28 photographers from 28 EU countries' EuroARTPhoto photography exhibition in Palazzo Fondazione Stelline Museum in Milan and at Museo Laboratorio d’Arte contemporanea MLAC in Rome, Italy.
2016: Ghosts of Gesture included in Black Box Gallery Color Burst Contemporary Photography Exhibition in Portland, United States.
Ghosts of Gesture also represents Metsähuone's work as an artist in Artists To Look Out For Program in United States.