Heli Kaskinen’s photographs are about turning things around. Through these twists and turns Kaskinen can take experiences and look at them from a new, humoristic angle. Bringing forth the private can be daunting, but most secrets are revealed to be shared experiences.
Heli Kaskinen’s photographic process reminds a wink of an eye. It is a tiny gesture that can alter the meaning of a larger whole and turn interpretations upside down. From her own childhood memories the artist recalls a memorable experience of her grandmother trying to teach her to wink. The end result was nothing more that a little girl closing both of her eyes with considerable vigour. Unaware of grandmother’s efforts and worried about the mysterious blinking, the artist’s parents even took her to see the doctor. ”In later years my grandmother lost her memory and no longer recognized me. The last time we met I saw her giving me a wink. She did remember me and the secret we had shared!” Kaskinen describes her memory.
Heli Kaskinen’s Act Like Nothing Happened is an attempt to turn around secrets and embarrassing things through both conceptualism and humour. With these turns her pieces try to look on the other side of an experience and see them from a new, often funny, point of view. The aim is to open up the curtain of privacy and the culture of silence. Many of our secrets are in fact shared experiences, but the fear of what others may think prevents us from revealing them.
Heli Kaskinen (b. 1981) studies photographic art both at Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture and the Academy of Fine Arts of the University of the Arts in Helsinki. Her works have been exhibited in many group shows both abroad as well as in Finland. Act Like Nothing Happened is Kaskinen’s second solo exhibition and also a part of her Master of Arts thesis for the Fine Arts Academy’s Time and Space Arts programme.
Act Like Nothing Happened
Yrjönkatu 8–10 courtyard, 00120 Helsinki, +358 9 612 33 44, www.hippolyte.fi
Opening hours: Tue–Fri 12–5 pm, Sat–Sun 12–4 pm
(image: Heli Kaskinen)