Recording a landscape as a photograph is easy, yet also impossible. A landscape is too vast an experience to be captured onto a small rectangular surface. In his exhibition, The Anatomy of Landscape – Dissection, photographic artist Ilkka Halso has approached his experience of this difficulty from another angle, by finding new ways of exposing the landscape and its structures. In a very concrete form, Halso deconstructs the landscape and its concept through focussing his eye on thin layers within its profile.
The title of the exhibition borrows the term dissection from anatomy, as a method of analysing by dividing something into its parts. The analogy between examining a living landscape and a dead body creates interesting yet morbid associations. With light as his tool, Ilkka Halso slices and cuts the landscape into biopsies, making cross-sections with a figurative scalpel. Even though the subject matter is the landscape, his images also speak of humans and their need to control and adjust the environment, including their perception and experience of it. Via an almost clinical approach the landscape becomes the material of the so called “scientific man’s” ways of perceiving and parsing nature.
The views in Ilkka Halso’s photographs are artificially lit from above in the darkness. Using a remote-controlled multicopter, flashlights are freely moved above the landscape, highlighting boundless details. From each location hundreds of frames of material are recorded, constituting massive amounts of data that can be manipulated in at least as many different ways. In this exhibition, we can see panoramic collages and exploded views containing the photographic biopsies collected by Ilkka Halso, all photographed over the last three years from different places around Finland.
Ilkka Halso is a photographic artist based in Orimattila, Finland. He is known for works that deal with humans’ relationship to nature, employing both physical and digital interventions. In his visions of the future, bordering on dystopian, nature is being restored, or marvelled at as rare spectacle, and protected and stored away from human influence. In 1992, Ilkka Halso graduated with an MA from the University of Art and Design in Helsinki. Since then, his works have been widely shown in both solo and group exhibitions within Finland and abroad.
The realization of this exhibition is funded by Arts Promotion Centre Finland, Kone Foundation, Finnish Cultural Foundation and its Päijät-Häme regional Fund, and the Niilo Helander’s Foundation.
The Anatomy of Landscape – Dissection
31 August – 23 September 2018
Photographic Gallery Hippolyte
Open: Tue–Fri 12–17, Sat–Sun 12–16
image: Ilkka Halso, Knolls, Pallas Fell – Exploded view, 2016