We will open the exhibition on Thursday, 2 June at 4–7pm in the presence of the artist.
Tuomas A. Laitinen’s fourth solo show at Helsinki Contemporary titled Solvent is an exhibition about vessels, containment, symbiosis and the question of distribution.
The exhibition is based on containment vats or spill pallets used for environmental protection for different industries. These containers have a particular use in storing hazardous materials and solvents, but in this context, they also refer to 1970s and 1980s science fiction sets, where a service tunnel of a spaceship (like Nostromo in Alien, 1979) might have these kinds of steel grids. On these table-like containers, there are sculptures from the series of works that Laitinen has produced for Octopuses, and a setting connected to the history and mythology of coffee. These works are all related to Laitinen’s research on shapeshifting bodies, other-than-human oceanic lifeforms, and the alteration of neurotransmitters.
Solvent also presents a new multichannel ultrasonic audio installation, The Cauldron: a sympoietic collage of recipes, bowel-like sounds, polyrhythmic breathing, and environmental data. The work is inspired by the three witches in Macbeth. These characters can be seen as forecasters of future events and as recipe makers and world-builders.
A new VR work is an experimental proposal to make vision tangible. It uses eye-tracking technology to allow viewers to alter the scenario with their eyes, accompanied by a delirious audio collage which acts as a commentary for the work. The real-time simulation is a strange ritual of consequences and codependencies, considering the fickle quality of vision and how it alters the world.