The Art Trail

a journey to explore the world of art & creativity around us
Contemporary Art Gallery Exhibitions Paintings

Imaginative worlds in abstract paintings

From left to right: Sulamith and Margarete | Maaria Oikarinen | 2015, acrylic on canvas. All pictures by The Art Trail.

Colors, splashes, smudges, bubbles, thick brush strokes and delicate lines reveal expressions of different worlds in Group OOO’s abstract painting exhibition at Galleria Huuto.

In Maaria Oikarinen’s frequently distressed paintings, not just one but multiple worlds collide, create and re-create a struggle in a constant search for calmer horizons. My large paintings refer to the Holocaust as well as the conflict between Israel and Palestine. These themes emerged when I was studying in Jerusalem during the summer of 2015.

Whether it is the aftermath or the ongoing conflict that the artist wants to capture on canvas, it feels as though the color splashes are soon going to migrate towards each-other, causing more paint to be spilled, more dripping down lines crawling towards the edges, pulled by the inevitable force of gravity. However unsettling, this engaging dynamics gives hope for new beginnings, as whites and scrapes of canvas left unpainted make room for braver new worlds to surface.

Maaria Oikarinen_ detail from Margarete

Detail from Margarete | Maaria Oikarinen | 2015, acrylic on canvas

Maaria Oikarinen_ Sulamith

Sulamith | Maaria Oikarinen | 2015, acrylic on canvas

Maaria Oikarinen_ The most Beautiful Killers - The Most Precious Blood

The Most Beautiful Killers – The Most Precious Blood | Maaria Oikarinen | 2015, acrylic on canvas

Thick paint brushstrokes in powerful dark color tones and shy glimpses of white as a world in between real and mental landscapes emerges in Maaria Märkälä’s paintings. At times, the paint leaves the canvas and an inviting multicolored wave grasps the viewer’s eye and imagination.

In Se on precis, two canvases are combined. More than just being the mirrored reflection of one another, each seems to give an alternative interpretation of the other’s landscape. The dripping lines defying gravity in Nästan mark an upside-down world, recalling compositions of German artist Gerog Baselitz, to the spirit of which the artist herself associates her painting: I test the boundaries of abstract art in the spirit of Georg Baselitz.

Maaria Märkälä_Se on precis

Se On Precis | Maaria Märkälä| 2015, oil on canvas

Maaria Märkälä_detail_Se On Precis

Detail from Se On Precis | Maaria Märkälä| 2015, oil on canvas

Maaria Märkälä Nästan

Nästan | Maaria Märkälä| 2015, oil on canvas

The thin, delicate lines on clean-color surfaces illustrate stylized branches and plants in Mia Saharla’s beautiful, poetic compositions. They recall a Japonism influence, yet the seemingly unpremeditated brush strokes leave the imagery open to the viewer’s interpretation. While carefully observing the canvases, I was surprised to find so much life, hope, harmony and – at the same time – balance in this free form technique.

Mia Saharla - Layered Observations_

Layered Observations | Mia Saharla | 2015, oil on canvas

Mia Saharla - Layered Observations_detail

Detail from Layered Observations | Mia Saharla | 2015, oil on canvas

Mia Saharla - From a Landscape

From A Landscape | Mia Saharla | 2016, oil on canvas

Mia Saharla - Plant

Plant | Mia Saharla | 2015, oil on canvas

The smudged color spreads in Tapani Hyypiä’s paintings brought back to mind Gehard Richter’s Teyde Landscape from 1971. Like a blurred landscape photograph, Hyypiä’s observations open a window into a once-known world, now transformed before our eyes, its light opaque, its edges infused with uncertainty.

Tapani Hyypiä Harvest

Harvest | Tapani Hyypiä | 2016, oil on canvas

Detail from Harvest Tapani Hyypiä

Detail from Harvest | Tapani Hyypiä | 2016, oil on canvas

Panu Ruotsalo’s Uprising re-imagines the bubbles we would sometimes accidentally capture with our old camera photos. Someone once told me they are called “happiness bubbles”, immortalizing the joy of the photographed crowd or that of the photographer himself / herself. This expressive painting recalls that feeling in a burst of bright color spots forming an adventurous heart shape.

Panu Ruotsalu_Uprising

Uprising | Panu Ruotsalo | 2015, oil on canvas

Geometrics meets illusion in Matti Rantanen’s clear-form compositions. The detailed work strives for a tree-dimensional world of perfection and balance. Stepping into the world is allowed but not before properly equipped with a ground set of rules. If you are ready for the game – you can play it.

Matti Rantanen - Untitled 2014

Untitled  | Matti Rantanen | 2014, acrylic on medium-density fibreboard

Matti Rantanen - Untitled 2014_
Untitled  | Matti Rantanen | 2014, acrylic on medium-density fibreboard

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