The title of Hanna Timonen’s exhibition acts as an invitation and a persuasion to look every day. The series of works in situ around Helsinki suburbs focuses on photo-observation and considers the question: if one looks carefully every day, what quality of ordinary places and their evolution could be revealed? Daily life within cities’ public spaces is regularly deemed unremarkable and often overlooked—it’s transformations usually gradual. Even the dismantling of the buildings that might feel sudden is the result of long-standing projects brewing in the background. Only afterwards, or at the time of the change in town planning, will the reshaping become visible.
The works shown at Photographic Gallery Hippolyte started from Timonen chronicling her neighbourhood. The theme of the series is the routine environment—simultaneously, the photography itself is a successional activity and takes place amidst and alongside diurnal chores. Aircraft Collection (2013–) is Timonen’s continuous image archive, where she collects colour photos of small aircrafts flying over the suburbs taken on a film camera. Timonen started the series while she was on parental leave, capturing what was then possible to photograph. Conjointly, the other works in the exhibition offer a compelling perspective on notions of the home.
The black and white series Bridge (2016–2017) presents a dismountable (soon to be demolished) pedestrian bridge in Laajasalo. The bridge’s significance to its surroundings comes across from the field notes. The moving image work, The Portrait of a House (2011–2018), portrays a parish house in Northern Herttoniemi (built in 1969)—already demolished years ago. The work consists of family portraits and images photographed on colour slide film. Through Timonen’s observations, the exhibition challenges ideas concerning urban planning and its many dimensions.
The photographic series in the exhibition are part of Timonen’s Doctoral Thesis at Aalto University School of Art and Design. In her doctoral research, Timonen is examining serial photography both as an artistic and habitual activity, and the relationship and distinctions between serial and day to day photography.
Hanna Timonen is a Helsinki-based artist and doctoral researcher in the Media Department at Aalto University School of Art and Design. She has been studying photography in the University of Westminster, London, and graduated as Master of Arts from the Fine Arts Academy Department of Time and Space in 2005. As well as Photographic Gallery Hippolyte, Timonen’s works has been on display at Gallery Huuto and Gallery Alkovi in Helsinki.
Aalto ARTS has kindly supported the exhibition.
Look Every Day
Photographic Gallery Hippolyte
Open: Tue-Fri 12-17, Sat-Sun 12-16
image: Hanna Timonen, Aircraft Collection, 2013–, colour photograph