ELINA BROTHERUSRègle du jeu
latest exhibition features a selection of photographs and videos from Elina
Brotherus´ series Règle du jeu (Rules
of the game). This is the first time these works are shown in Finland. The series
was first exhibited at the photography gallery of the Pompidou Centre in Paris
after Brotherus won the French Carte Blanche PMU prize in 2017. The competition
brief was to analyse the world of games and to give it expression through the
medium of images.
Prior to her prize, Brotherus had already begun working on a photographic series influenced by the 1960s Fluxus artists. Her interest was prompted by a 2015 exhibition at the Berlinische Galerie displaying the personal archive and art collection of legendary German gallerist René Block. Block´s gallery was the first to provide a platform for the Fluxus artists.
Throughout her career, Elina Brotherus has used herself as a model in her work. In Règle du jeu, she is joined in front of the camera by dancer and choreographer Vera Nevanlinna. The majority of the works are based on so-called event scores, short scripts that set out the actions of the performance. Règle du jeu also includes event scores created by Brotherus and Nevanlinna themselves and extracts from poems by Tuomas Timonen. Music for the videos is composed and performed by Antti Ikonen.
What sets Brotherus apart from the original Fluxus artists is that she does not perform in front of an audience but in front of a camera, and does so with the objective of not just recording the action but also of creating an interesting image. For Brotherus, art is a performative practice. With this new body of work, she is turning a new page in her own creative expression - and in the broader continuum of contemporary art itself.
The event scores are a suitably flexible tool for Brotherus, leaving room for improvisation and the artist´s own psychological reflections. The works presented here are in fact a series of reinterpretations. This is apposite, as the event scores were originally intended to be performed by anyone. Brotherus has not looked up for documentations of the original performances, and it is unclear whether such recordings exist or not.
For Brotherus, the process of creating these works has meant negotiating the tension between creative impulses and the sense of inspiration such impulses generate. It has been an artistic adventure, a chance for an adult to engage in a play. The game itself is always subject to a rational framework of rules, but also a poetic pursuit - light yet serious.
Elina Brotherus (b. 1972) is a highly acclaimed photographer and video artist. She lives and works in Helsinki, Finland and Avallon, France. Brotherus is the first Finnish visual artist to have a solo exhibition at the Centre Pompidou. The exhibition was accompanied by the monograph Règle du jeu, published by Filigranes Editions in 2017. Brotherus will have an extensive survey exhibition of her recent work 2016-2018 at the Serlachius Museum Gustaf in June 2018.
Meet the artist at Galleria Heino on Sunday, January 14th 2018, 1 to 3pm. Elina Brotherus and Vera Nevanlinna will be joined in discussion by Marja Sakari, Fluxus specialist and Chief Curator at Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art, Helsinki.