Friday, November 30, 2012

Residency Life in Turku, Finland

When I opened this blog at first, it was more about my curatorial projects, but as time goes by, it is more about the residencies I am doing as well as other stuff. 
     So, you might wonder what Mary is up to these days!
     I came here in Turku this September. It's been already three months. Time really flies. The leaves were changing their colors but not it's already snow on the ground.
     In the mean time, I have done so much, and I am not so sure if I can describe everything well here or not.
So, the first thing I did here in Turku was visiting all the places related to art. First, Eeva, the residency program manager from the Aboa Vetus & Ars Nova Museum told me about this atelier visit week. I could get a stamp from an each place which was also related to some prize. I only realized this later after I visited already several places. Oh, well. C'est la vie. I visited Titanik Gallery, Jänis Gallery, Turku Art Academy, as well as other art places etc.

Titanik Gallery
     Through this visit, I met many artists in several places. Many of them are quite impressive, but one among them I want to mention here is an artist I met at the Turku Art Academy. She was a lady who started her art study quite later than others, but she has such a passion. I was not allowed to post any photo online, so I think it is not so easy to find out who she is here. I guess it is a bit Finnish way.
     Actually during this visit, I also got a chance to be invited to a group show at a gallery as well while I was talking about my stuff. I guess this is the way to go as an artist or a curator, you familiarize yourself with local art scene by visiting places when visiting program is on. But I think you should be quite diligent to do this, though. No one will take you out of your studio unless you take out yourself first.
During the Eurocultured Festival

    I also happened to bump into a festival in Turku by accident. There were several music bands were playing during the festival. It was great to get some sort of ideas what kind of culture in this country has in terms of art other than fine art. Another impressive one here was the acrobatic. I've heard there is also a major related to acrobatics at Turku University. I guess it is quite big here in Turku. It reminds me of the time I was in Tallinn as well. 
   The workshop I have done with the museum turned out great. I really appreciated the participation of the ladies. In the end, we created such an amazing exhibition called, Mieleni Maut.

Opening Day of Mieleni Maut
       I haven't really thought about the precious time for each individual with food before. As I made the questionnaire for this project, I had to reconsider every single perspective I had before about my own food experiences.
        Everything is a bit like that. Unless you stop and think about things, those will never really come to yourself. I think this kind of residency is similar to that. I just stopped my whole life in Jeju, and turn my direction towards this country, Finland. As soon as I arrived, I started studying Finnish again. I am very proud of myself who passed the exam as well. Speaking basic Finnish everyday is quite fun and it also links me to the local society, since I look very different from them. At least I can connect with some small talks with my basic Finnish. Language is something we can at least try to get closer to the culture in an easiest way, well, at least to me. When I was in Finland last time, I didn't quite acquire the similarity between Korean and Finnish, but this time, since the whole course was in English, I understood and analyzed more about these two languages' similarities as well as the differences.
       More than anything, I am enjoying this silence. It looks like a snow storm outside, but with this white world, I might go even deeper into my creative life.

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