Marja Helander’s Birds in the Earth screened at Dance on Camera Festival

Marja Helander’s Risto Jarva awarded short film Eatnanvuloš lottit – Birds in the Earth (2018) will be screened at the 46th Dance on Camera Festival, held in New York from July 20–24. The screening of Helander’s short film takes place in Walter Reade Theater on Saturday, July 21, at 13:00.

Birds in the Earth is a short film based on dance. The main characters are two young Sámi ballet students; Birit and Katja Haarla. The movie tells a beautiful and a bit melancholic story through their dance performances. It´s about the nature in Sápmi, the youth, the dance. At the same time, it examines the deeper questions of the ownership of Sámi land and the Sámi’s rights in today’s Finland, the Sámi being the indigenous people of Scandinavia and Kola peninsula. The contradicition between nature and modern lifestyle is blurred with humor.

Marja Helander was born in Finland in 1965. She lives and works in Helsinki. After originally training as a painter at the Lahti Institute of Fine Arts from 1988 to 1992, Helander then pursued her interest in photography and graduated from the University of Art and Design in Helsinki in 1999In 1994 she was one of the ten finalists of the Fotofinlandia-competition. Since then she has presented works in solo- and group-exhibitions both in Finland and abroad, with many shows in Scandinavia, including the Hasselblad Center in Göteborg, BildMuseet in Umeå, Charlottenborg Exhibition Hall in Copengahen, Galleri F15 in Moss, Norway and in Nuuk, Grönland, and internationally further afield in Canada, The Art Gallery of Hamilton; South Africa, Johannesburg Art Gallery; and Mali, The 7th African Photography Biennial. Helander’s work explores the question of identity with regards to her Sámi background, the Sámi being the indigenous people of Scandinavia. Recent work has focused on landscape in which dark, mysterious views are portrayed without people. These examine the modern union between nature and mankind as not harmonious, but dark.

The 46th Dance on Camera Festival, 20.–24.7.2018, New York, U.S.

More information: Dance on Camera