Eija-Liisa Ahtila opens first Belgian solo exhibition

Eija-Liisa Ahtila opens first Belgian solo exhibition

Finnish master of the cinematic installation form

Friday, May 18, 2018 — From 18 May to 16 September

Eija-Liisa Ahtila (°1959, Finland) is a contemporary visual artist and filmmaker. She has long been considered a master of the cinematic installation form. Her work is conceptually organized around the construction of image, language, narrative, and space, and she has frequently probed individual identity and the boundaries of the subject in relation to the external world. Using the visual language of cinema, Ahtila presents large-scale installations with multiple channel projections on multiple screen constructions. These viewing conditions, with their simultaneously charged vantage points, break the tradition of cinematic perspective and construct an experience of several co-existing times and spaces for being.

Bending cinematic rules

Using the visual language of cinema, Ahtila presents large-scale installations with multiple channel projections on multiple screen constructions. These viewing conditions, with their simultaneously charged vantage points, break the tradition of cinematic perspective and construct an experience of several co-existing times and spaces for being.

From human drama's to the ecological crisis

Eija-Liisa Ahtila experiments with narrative storytelling in her cinematic installations and films. In her earlier works, she dealt with the unsettling human dramas at the centre of personal relationships – teenage sexuality, family relations, mental disintegration and death. Her later works deal with profound and basic artistic questions, in which she investigates the processes of perception and attribution of meaning – at times in the light of larger cultural and existential themes like colonialism, faith and posthumanism.The artist encourages us to explore how the anthropocentric medium of film might enable us to narrate the life of the planet itself as well as our own. The starting point for many of her recent works and research has, for instance, been the eco-cinematic question of how and with what kind of technology, drama and expressive devices can we build the image of our world in this present moment of ecological crisis?

First Belgian retrospective

This exhibition offers a survey of Ahtila’s practice through seven film installations made between 2001 and 2018 and a series of drawings. Each of the works has been redesigned for its specific presentation at M.

Curator: Eva Wittocx

Bio

Eija-Liisa Ahtila has studied at the University of California, Los Angeles; the American Film Institute, Los Angeles; the London College of Printing and the University of Helsinki. Her works have been exhibited widely in solo shows, for example at: Tate Modern, London (2002); The Museum of Modern Art, New York (2006); Moderna Museet, Stockholm (2012); Jeu de Paume, Paris (2008); Neu National Gallery, Berlin (2000). Eija-Liisa Ahtila has also participated in numerous international art exhibitions such as the Venice Biennale (2005 and 1999); Documenta 11 (2002) and the Sydney Biennial (2018 and 2002). Her films and retrospectives have been screened in many major festivals including Berlin, Sundance, Venice and Rotterdam, among others. 

Works on show

1. POTENTIALITY FOR LOVE, 2018

2. ANTHROPOMORPHIC EXERCISES ON FILM, 2011 (series of drawings)

3.  HORIZONTAL, 2011

4. THE PRESENT, 2001

5. STUDIES ON THE ECOLOGY OF DRAMA, 2014

6. THE ANNUNCIATION, 2010

7. FISHERMEN, 2007

8. THE WIND, 2002

 

 

 

 

Eija-Liisa Ahtila, POTENTIALITY FOR LOVE – MAHDOLLINEN RAKKAUS, 2018<br/>    Photographed by Malla Hukkanen © Crystal Eye - Kristallisilmä Oy, Helsinki
Eija-Liisa Ahtila, POTENTIALITY FOR LOVE – MAHDOLLINEN RAKKAUS, 2018<br/>    Photographed by Malla Hukkanen © Crystal Eye - Kristallisilmä Oy, Helsinki
Eija-Liisa Ahtila, Studies on the Ecology of Drama, Still images Crystal Eye 2014 © Malla Hukkanen
Eija-Liisa Ahtila, Studies on the Ecology of Drama, Still images Crystal Eye 2014 © Malla Hukkanen
Eija-Liisa Athila, Horizontal, installation view M ©Koen De Waal
Eija-Liisa Ahtila, Horizontal, Screen capture 2011© Crystal Eye
Eija-Liisa Ahtila, The Annunciation, Installation view M © Koen De Waal
Eija-Liisa Ahtila, The Annunciation, Still images Crystal Eye 2010 © Antti Ruusuvuori
Eija-Liisa Ahtila, The Annunciation, Still images Crystal Eye 2010 © Antti Ruusuvuori
Eija-Liisa Ahtila Studies on the ecology of drama, installation view M © Koen De Waal
Eija-Liisa Ahtila, Fishermen, installation view M © Koen De Waal
Eija-Liisa Ahtila <br/>© Sara Supply