Esko Männikkö

Southern Comfort
1 apr. - 13 may 2006

Installation view


Esko Männikkö (Pudasjärvi, 1959) lives and works in Oulu, in the North of Finland. Between 1990 and 1995 he made a series of "hot portraits from the great cold", collected in the book The Female Pike, which made him famous throughout the world. His subjects pose at ease and the viewers have the immediate possibility of sharing a profound intimacy. The following cycle, Mexas, was worked upon in Texas. However Männikkö has such a strong-structured idea of image to make it sometimes difficult for the viewers to recognize where it is set. Taking pictures is, for Männikkö, an ongoing research for a form capable of representing his attitude towards life. This same approach is to be found in the series Flora & Fauna, where small details are depicted in images which are apparently abstract but nevertheless, after a closer scrutiny, reveal figurative forms.

In this exhibition the artist will show mainly chairs. Indoor or outdoor, in his exquisite unique style, Männikkö pictures chairs as portraits and with this element of truth he resuscitates an entire narrative cycle that evokes the identity of furniture as well as the habits of their owners. In Finland, United States and Scotland, the artist has photographed people, places, and details, always far from anonymity. Dense in descriptive details, and at the same time simple and essential, his photograph portraits reveal more truth, than we are capable of absorbing.

Sylvi ?
73 x 62 cm
Richard ?
69 x 83 cm
Jussi ?
c-print mounted on aluminum
209 x 95 cm