Working at the ‘studio’ in Inkoo (Part 1)

Working at the ‘studio’ in Inkoo (Part 1)

Photographic short stories – documentation from the pages of our performance-oriented society.

In 2009 I began to work on a large-scale work Photographic short stories – documentation from the pages of our performance-oriented society.

In this work I document the everyday life, thoughts and feelings of people all around the world. I aim to complete this work as a museum exhibition in 2019.

In early 2009 my workroom was in a basement in Vantaa. With this new work the space became too small rather rapidly. Renting a large space within the Helsinki metropolitan area would be financially disastrous. Therefore I began searching for an affordable, large space within 100 km radius from Helsinki. After a few months of searching I rented and old farm from Inkoo, some 70 km west of Helsinki. The farm had been empty for four years.

My new studio included a 120 m2 house that smelled of cigarettes and mold; an airy (read ‘drafty’) stone cowshed of about 150 m2 as well as an open-faced garage. Amenities did not include WC, running water, heating or kitchen. All this for only 150 € per month; in Helsinki I would have been lucky to get an office space of 7 m2.

My first summer at the Inkoo studio was fabulous. The spacious working area; the forests, hills and a lake in the surrounding area were a unique luxury. I could build the set for four images at the same time with an assistant. After a day’s shoot it was possible to go for a swim. The yard was full of flowers and berry bushes. When one plant had finished to blossom, the next one was pushing new ones. On the way home deer and elk were sometimes jumping on the dark road. I felt I was living in a dream: I had found a perfect working environment for myself. Then came the autumn and, as we all know, it is followed by winter.

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