Nomad, by Tatu Vuorio. Bronze, mirror and wood, 4 x 16 x 21cm, 2014. (Photos courtesy Finlandia University Gallery)
HANCOCK -- "Tatu Vuorio: Alchemy" is on display at the Finlandia University Gallery, located in the Finnish American Heritage Center, Hancock, through October 18, 2014.
An opening reception at the gallery will take place from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. TONIGHT, Thursday, Sept. 25. Dr. Alexandra Morrison, Michigan Tech visiting assistant professor of philosophy, will present a talk on art and philosophy beginning at 7:15 p.m. The reception is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served.
In a series of works titled "Alchemy," Finnish artist Tatu Vuorio explores the ideas of existentialism. Small in stature and poetic in nature, Vuorio’s work asks big questions. How should we live each day? How do our actions of today affect tomorrow? How does coincidence drive existence? How does the inevitability of death affect the way we live our life? Vuorio’s lyrical and sensuous work asks us to pause, reflect and question the most meaningful and most undefined qualities of human life.
Drawing from abstract, figurative and conceptual traditions, Vuorio’s work experiments with technique and material, combining painting, sculpture, jewellery and installation.
"As a creative person I have not experienced the need to focus on a particular method," says Vuorio. "I find using a variety of techniques, materials and approaches to address my inspiration creates the most dynamic meaningfulness."
Every cloud has a silver lining, by Tatu Vuorio. Mdf, aluminium,concrete, sterling silver, 4 x 22 x 22, 2014.
"The key thing of making art has been a curiosity and interest in new issues," Vuorio notes.
Using intuition and experimentation, Vuorio explores the theme of human existence, with mythology of the alchemist tradition and philosophy integral to his work.
Vuorio believes that to create something new, an artist must have an understanding of the history of artistic pursuits, including materials and working techniques. It is by experimenting and stretching this historical knowledge, and combining it with the courage to explore, that Vuorio creates work -- work that sometimes even takes him by surprise.
Vuorio received a Master of Arts in Applied Art and Design from Aalto-University of Art and Design and a Bachelor of Design in Applied Art/Jewellery and Object Design from Lahti University of Applied Sciences, Institute of Design. He is currently a Jewelry design teacher at IJKK Järvenpää. He has also taught courses in Painting and Sculpture.
His work has been exhibited widely in Finland and he was the Association of Finnish Sculptors "Artist of the Month" in January 2014.
He has received grants from the City of Espoo, the Arts Council of Finland (2013, 2014) and the Aune and Mauri Riuttu’s foundation, among others.
The Finlandia University Gallery is in the Finnish American Heritage Center, 435 Quincy Street, Hancock. Gallery hours are Monday to Friday 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Thursday 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturday noon to 4 p.m. or by appointment.
For more information, call 906-487-7500.