MIKA TAANILAExposures 12.8.2006 – 3.9.2006
Scientist/artist Erkki Kurenniemi shot all his 15 psychedelic movies using a Pathé Reflex Webo "M" cine camera he acquired in 1962. Two years ago, Erkki donated this superb 16 mm camera to me. One of the technical features of the camera is an ability to rewind the film when it is still loaded in the camera. This would encourage any film-maker on a non-existent budget and with a flawed imagination to expose the same film time and again.
Even after the laboratory, the image is still far from final. It is in motion. The loop of film runs day after day in the gallery, becoming scratched and damaged throughout the exhibition.
Exposures is the making of a direct, instinctive movie. Observations. Anxiety, Dreams. A momentary escape to the consoling world of shadows.
Debris of futures way past - their sell-by date, too - as well as fragments - posing defiantly as the real thing in and of themselves - of futures more possible than likely are the stuff Mika Taanila's oeuvre is made of. Being a creature of our times-between - or at least knowing how to look like one... - Taanila's work has been difficult to locate, pidgeonhole: It's for now more appreciated in the worlds of fine art and modern, mainly electronic music than in cinema although Taanila's a filmmaker first and foremost. Whose films are, admittedly, hybrids of the first order which might be the reason for film culture's difficulties with him -- no genre alone provides a shield big enough for him to put on: His films are wickedly wise, weird, and wacky mixes of documentary and experimental forms/approaches with decicive touches of - science, yeah! and certainly speculative - fiction.