Hannaleena Heiska

Photo: Sara Ahde

Hannaleena Heiska’s paintings, drawings, video works and installations create illusions of captured moments, different worlds and subcultures. She makes her paintings in a single sitting, “alla prima”, striving to achieve brushwork that looks effortless and easy. This gives her paintings the feeling of being a fleeting moment, and a sort of nostalgia. The technique she uses while drawing resembles her way of painting, removing material from a blackened paper to create an image. Her imagery has moved from portraits of masquerade characters and anthropomorphic animal figures to characters and scenery from the film Blade Runner and has most recently been inspired by multiverses, artificial intelligence, the future and the possibility of life after death.

Hannaleena Heiska (b. 1973, Oulu) graduated from the Department of Painting at the Finnish Academy of Fine Arts in 2006. She was one of the artists nominated for the biggest art prize in Finland, the Ars Fennica, in 2011. Heiska has exhibited internationally, for example, at the 4th Ural Industrial Biennial, Yekaterinburg, Russia, 2017; Gothenburg Art Museum, Gothenburg, 2015; Espace Louis Vuitton Gallery, Tokyo 2012; and the CAC – Contemporary Art Centre, Vilnius, Lithuania 2010. Heiska’s works are represented in many significant public collections, such as Gothenburg Museum of Art, Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma, Helsinki, and EMMA – Espoo Museum of Modern Art. Her videoworks have been shown at numerous film and media-art festivals in Europe. Her film Today We Live won first prize in the Helsinki Short Film Festival in 2013.