The last Saari Fellows for 2018 have arrived

In the beginning of November, the residents of this year’s last period arrived at the misty Saari. The Saari Fellows working at the residence in November and December include authors Marjo Heiskanen (Finland) and Chris Kraus (USA); artist and author Vappu Jalonen (Finland); visual artists Jaakko Karhunen (Finland), Yassine Khaled (Morocco/Finland) and Nestori Syrjälä (Finland) and artist and photographer Sanne Kabalt (NL). Playwright and director Kevin Doyle will continue his work as Saari Invited Artist.

Helsinki-based author Marjo Heiskanen is working at the Saari Residence on a novel for young adults about climate change. Before writing the actual novel, she intends to absorb the topic by researching and independently studying climate change from various perspectives, including physics.

The works of artist and author Vappu Jalonen occupy a position at the crossroads of visual art, literature, performance art, sound art and research. At the residence, she is working on a new performance, which she is building through text and sound, as well as physical exercises (including running and silent presence).

During her period at Saari, Dutch artist and photographer Sanne Kabalt is researching the process as the piece. Even the word ‘photograph’ has strong associations linked to it: for example, it “captures” the moment. The photograph is often seen as a static end result at an exhibition or in a publication, but Kabalt is interested in the process involved with creating the photograph – what happens before and after the picture is taken and put on display. In addition to the photograph, she utilises both performance and installation in her work.

London-based Finnish artist Jaakko Karhunen has dedicated his time at Saari to working on his artistic research project “Reading the Enemies”, which deals with controversy. He examines the fundamental nature of controversy and disagreements both in science and political discourse by inviting researchers from the humanities to make interpretations of their own opponents.

Moroccan visual artist Yassine Khaled, who lives in Helsinki, deals with the imbalance between power and wealth and powerlessness and poverty in his multidisciplinary work. During his residency, he plans to implement a series of 2–3 oil paintings dealing with art and social issues. This series will combine an interpretation of the sculpture “Ugolino and His Sons” by Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux and a view of the current political situation in Morocco. He is also writing an essay on the paintings and their relationship with the Moroccan political situation and the European refugee crisis.

American author Chris Kraus is writing an essay which combines various genres and tells the story of photographer Reynaldo Rivera. The essay “Reynaldo Rivera: Provisional Notes for a Disappeared City” will be published in the spring of 2019 in a book about Rivera’s work. In the 1980s and 1990s, Rivera photographed his home town Los Angeles from various perspectives: his pictures convey a fascinating city with cheap rental homes, house parties, underground fashion and bands and a few Latin American gay/transvestite bars.

In his work, visual artist Nestori Syrjälä from Helsinki reflects on the escalating environmental crises and how the techniques of extended sculpture can be further developed to meet these challenges. Can the materials of a sculpture and the tools and energy used play an equal role alongside the artist’s ideas in creating the meanings of the artwork? How can we use art to process psychological reactions, such as anxiety and sorrow, triggered by our increasing awareness of climate change and mass extinctions?

New York-based playwright and director Kevin Doyle is continuing his work as Saari Residence’s residency guest. Read more about his work below.