SAMI LUKKARINENNew Camouflage
After the turn of the millennium, broadband internet, digital cameras, web cams and camera phones began to become more common. Digital images and image processing, together with pictures and text that could be sent around the world in real time, began to change our relationship with images. The internet became a reality for many. Anyone could post a self-portrait, a self-image even, in an internet picture gallery or at a video community for all to see.
In his 2001 exhibition, the artist Sami Lukkarinen first showed images he had discovered on the internet, pixellated and then painted onto canvas. His subject then was functionalist architecture. Modern Finnish church architecture, spam and internet picture galleries later followed. In this new exhibition, he continues his examination of picture gallery images.
His paintings have been described as impressionistic, kinetic and reverse pointillist in turn but Lukkarinen himself prefers to refer to them, not as photo realism but as photoshop realism: "I treat the digital image the way a traditional painter treats reality." In other words, what he presents here are images of images.