Diving into the wondrous world of sculptor Pekka Jylhä casts a new light on telling stories through a three-dimensional form. Both poetic and eye opening, this master of combining material with an immense sense of humanity shares his explorative worldview with us. (Continues…)

Aalto University’s annual graduate fashion show has become one of the high points of spring fashion in Northern Europe. Around Journal recollects the previous Näytös 17 -event with a gallery of backstage pictures by Eeva Suutari. (Continues…)

Fanny Tavastila’s work draws upon a nuanced spectrum of emotions. She builds her paintings slowly, layer upon layer: they are an intuitive and multifaceted examination of the relationship between the visible and the hidden, the everyday and the elegiac, the figurative and abstract. With an innate and lyrical sense of color, rhythm, texture and composition, her paintings capture the essence of that which is not easily expressed in words. (Continues…)

Tuomas A. Laitinen is a visual artist working mainly with video, light and installation. For his recent exhibition at Helsinki Contemporary gallery he continues to investigate the current questions related to biopolitics and ecology. Laitinen’s approach is as relevant as ever; manmade toxins and increasing pollution threaten the human existence. “The exhibition name reveals the concept of porousness, which for me is a way to think about dissolving the boundaries of binary thinking. I am interested in how ideas seep through each other organically.” (Continues…)

Finnish fashion designer Matti Liimatainen is interested in the prospects of automation in the fashion industry. His label Self-Assembly, S-A, was recently launched during Pre Helsinki’s Prenaissance presentation in EMMA, Espoo Museum of Modern Art. The first products appear like a combination of high technology and primitive aesthetics. Liimatainen has previously worked as a Design Development Manager at Aitor Throup Studio and as a designer at KTZ and BOY London.
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The renaissance moment in menswear inspired Around Journal to interview designer Havina Jäntti for her modern, and more unisex take on fashion. Gender has become a footnote; individualism arises. “I think the growth of gender-fluid fashion is a reflection of the society, since the importance of gender and the roles they bear are not as prominent as they have been in the past. Already some fashion houses have combined their men’s and women’s shows and present them as one collection. I think it’s a very natural thing to do.” (Continues…)

Around Journal had the pleasure to interview Tuomas Merikoski, designer and the creator of AALTO International. The successful Paris-based brand has its roots in Finnish culture and is enriched by international influences. Merikoski with his label is one of the four nominees for the highly respected ANDAM prize 2017. Merikoski is interested in creating a new kind of cultural Finnish identity. He is fascinated by collaborations with visual and other art forms, changing the formats and ways of working. (Continues…)

Around Journal interviewed Helen Jennings who is one of the founders of London-based global media brand Nataal. The beautifully curated platform celebrates African visual arts, fashion, music and society. In collaboration with Brooklyn creative space Red Hook Labs, Nataal just opened their second co-curated group exhibition. “New African Photography II features nine contemporary artists whose work engages with present-day Africa. The selected artists will be showing personal bodies of work addressing issues of representation and identity and celebrating fresh perspectives on the continent.” (Continues…)

Visual artist Erno Enkenberg is a master of suspense. In his minimalistic and well-detailed oil paintings the conclusion is left open for the viewer to decide. A carefully planned randomness in the composition of the large scale artworks gives the images a snap shot effect. Photography is a starting point of his work since all the paintings have miniature doubles. Around had the chance to interview Enkenberg at his studio and exclusively investigate these photo-sketches. (Continues…)