TIITUS PETÄJÄNIEMI’S eleventh exhibition looks sad in a funny way, as he describes it. The characters in his paintings can be a mix of human-extraterrestrial-animal faces or can be abstract works. Contrasting the characteristic sadness, Petäjäniemi plays with bright, joyful colors defying the viewer to swim in waters of deep thinking.
His paintings mirror the sadness people daily manifest, what is present around the artist surroundings.
“It is kind of interesting to see no matter how well people are doing, they are sad and unhappy,” the artist says.
His oil on canvas or wood work as a trigger, making the viewer wonder about sadness and happiness. Wouldn’t we be happier appreciating what we have instead of lamenting for what we don’t have?
Petäjäniemi’s works are not easy. They are a challenge for the viewer’s intellect, an invitation to the association of creative ideas. Understanding what the artist tries to say requires more than a couple of seconds observing the many layers in his works. The time invested is rewarding, indeed.
His work is authentic creation. He starts painting until he gets an answer from himself about the painting. If he is not satisfied, he adds more layers.
“Creating comes more natural and fresh than copying a model. I like the feeling when I notice a painting is ready,” he says.
His love for jazz finds space on canvas too. The Big Bang, represented by a drummer, is a sequence of associative thinking of the start of something bigger.
Petäjäniemi describes his Maalaus Vallasta Lastenhuoneen Seinälle (Painting About Power through the children’s room) as his best work.
“It has everything I feel about power and its symbols,” he explains.
The little chair on the table, symbol of power in the 19th Century, looks like a pint of beer ready to lure the sad man. The tall office building behind represents the rules and laws. A storm of changes is in the sky symbolizes the possibility of charges that are always there for the ones who can see them.
“Even when the winds of change are blowing people don’t see them and can’t make changes in their lives. You can make up your own story from what you see. This is the story I see, yours could be totally different,” he concludes.
The forty six art works are in exhibition at Galleria Jangva, located in the heart of Helsinki on Uudenmaankatu 4-6, entrance through the courtyard.
Opening hours: Tue-Fri 11am-7pm, Sat-Sun 11am-5pm
For more information see www.jangva.fi