Aarne Nopsanen: Keskiviikkokerho (1959), UPM-Kymmene Cultural Foundation


The changing images of work. From log driving to temping. 11.4.2014–17.8.2015

Labour of love or forced labour? Hard work is its own reward – or is it? Amos Anderson Art Museum presents Work? an exhibition opening on 10 April that raises questions about the nature of Finnish work and its changing representations. Work as a concept has changed and it is this turning-point that is at the heart of the exhibition. In earlier decades Finnish work was often represented in art through depictions of lumbering, and log driving in particular. A log driver struggling with his load was a romantic and compositionally interesting figure. We have come a long way from driving logs along rivers; work in the 2010s is often independent of time and place. How does one portray the kind of work that cannot be reduced to a single dynamic pose that in most cases mainly involves staring into a computer screen? Visitors are encouraged to ponder their own relationship to work and the meaning/s of work in an age, when new jobs and job descriptions are constantly introduced while ”traditional” jobs are becoming extinct

The Work? -exhibition at the Amos Anderson Art Museum consists of historically important works from the member collections of the Association of Finnish Fine Arts Foundations that depict labour. Some of the works combine the depiction of physical labour with the study of movement, while the suited members of the disreputable Wednesday Club, a group portrait by Aarne Nopsanen, appear frozen. On display are some 70 works by 31 artists: paintings, sculptures, drawings, photographs, video art as well as an installation.

The change in how work is represented is also evident in the works selected: ”Traditional” occupations have be depicted by Alvar Cawén, Pekka Halonen, Lennart Segerstråle, Felix Nylund and Juho Rissanen, while modern work is depicted in works by  Aino-Marjatta Mäen ja Jaakko Karhusen, Tuomo Mannisen, Meri Peuran, Kalle Turakka-Purhosen sekä Jussi Valtakari. Documentary photographs from the 1950s from the Finnish Labour Museum Werstas serve to complement the exhibition.

The exhibition has been produced by the Association of Finnish Fine Arts Foundations (STSY) and curated by Jyrki Siukonen, DFA and post-doc researcher.

Amos Anderson Art Museum

Yrjönkatu 27, P.O. Box 14, 00101 Helsinki. Tel. +398- (0)9- 684 4460. . www.amosanderson.fi

Opening hours: Mon, Thurs &  Fri 10 a.m.– 6 p.m., Wed 10 a.m.–8 p.m., Sat–Sun 11 a.m.–5 p.m. Tuesdays closed.

Tickets 10 €, seniors 8 €, students 2 €.  Under 18s free of charge.

Group bookings Tel. +398- (0)9- 684 4460.