ARTIST IN RESIDENCE

Small interview by: KulttuuriKauppila

Aki-Pekka Sinikoski is a Helsinki-based photographer and author whose best-known works include Finnish Teens (2011), Last Machos (2016), I Love Dogs (2020) and New Ghosts (2011–2058). Sinikoski often describes his artistic photo production methods as lengthy and time consuming. According to Sinikoski this is because of the exceptional scope of the documentary series but also due to his wish to capture the passing of time. He is not looking for decisive moments but rather the stagnant feeling just after these moments.

Sinikoski has graduated as Master of Art from the Department of Media at Aalto University, Finland. His major subject is from the Aalto University’s Institution of Photography. His work has been exhibited in numerous exhibitions both in Finland and abroad, and his work has been published by e.g. The Guardian and Vogue Italia.

Change and identity are reoccurring themes in Sinikoski’s work. He works in multiple different mediums, and the medium selects itself through the aim and content of the project at hand.

‘’I love both words and photographs. One of the biggest differences between the two mediums is the way that they are perceived by the observer. In a text the story is formed a word and a sentence at a time, and what is said in the next sentence does not exist until it is read. Photograph on the other hand reveals immediately some sort of general view, which gets more detailed the longer you spend observing the photo. Photograph also has always a somewhat strong relationship to reality,’’ Sinikoski explains.

This residency period was Sinikoski’s third time working in Ii. His previous visits were in 2015 and 2016.

‘’I feel very comfortable here in Ii and KulttuuriKauppila, it’s a good place to be. In the mornings the neighbour’s rooster greets me when it hears my footsteps approaching. Life is calm and simple, but at the same time I feel that the place is almost magical. Few nights ago I finished writing late at night, and went out for a stroll. By coincidence I ended up jamming with local musicians in the neighbourhood, who I met during my previous residency period in Ii. In between the jamming we went outside to just talk and admire the magical Northern Lights illuminating the sky above us. It was an unforgettable night that just happened, without any plan.’’  

During his residency period in Ii, Sinikoski worked on a sound installation, his photographs and two different book projects.

‘’The first book project is continuation to my children’s book Under the Moon‘ (Kuun valossa / Under månen)which was published last year. The other book is related to the ‘New Ghost’ photography series, which I have been working on with my daughter Astrid since 2011. The series has been shot around the world, including here in Ii in 2016 when I was here in a residency together with my daughter. KulttuuriKauppila has become a dear place to me, where I have found both like-minded people as well as the peace and quiet to listen to myself. During my residencies I have managed to get a lot of work done, but at the same time also take my artistic work forward, even to new directions.’’ 

The residency period was supported by Svenska Kulturfonden. Photos by: Aki-Pekka Sinikoski

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