Films by Mika Taanila, Anu Pennanen and Saara Ekström, featuring music from Mika Vainio, screened at Museu Serralves

Museu Serralves presents AV- arkki’s member artists’ short films in two screenings on consecutive days from 18–19 November 2023. All the works presented feature a soundtrack from the renowned musician Mika Vainio (1963–2017). A Mika Vainio listening room is also on view at the museum from November 17–26, 2023.

On the 18th of November, Mika Taanila’s Tectonic Plate (2016, in featured image) is screened at 4pm in the museum’s auditorium. The screening of A Physical Ring (2002), likewise by Taanila, A Monument for The Invisible (2003) by Anu Pennanen and Saara Ekström’s Phantasma (2016) takes place on the following day, the 19th of November, at 4:30pm in the same venue.

Tectonic Plate: A camera-less lettrist film about fear of flying, security checks and time zones. After returning from a trip to Tokyo, the protagonist is stuck at a hotel nearby the Helsinki airport. The use of various technical devices, slivers the time-management and modifies the jet-lagged consciousness.

A Physical Ring is a found-footage film configured into a site-specific installation for between one and four projectors. Its raw material is documentation of anonymous physical tests that took place in Finland during the 1940s; the original purpose of the tests remains unknown. Through careful editing techniques, the inanimate research footage is assembled into a piece of kinetic art. An integral part of the piece is the specially commissioned soundtrack by Mika Vainio.

Mika Taanila (s. 1965) is a filmmaker and visual artist based in Helsinki, Finland. He works with documentaries, experimental film and visual arts. Human engineering, utopias, failures and man-machines are recurring themes in his films and installations. Taanila’s works have been shown at major international group shows, such as Venice Biennale (Nordic Pavilion 2017), Aichi Triennale (2013), dOCUMENTA (2012), Shanghai Biennale (2006), Berlin Biennale (2004), Manifesta (2002) and Istanbul Biennial (2001).

Anu Pennanen: A Monument for the Invisible (2003)

A Monument for the Invisible investigates urban Helsinki from a blind person´s perspective. The film focuses on Ruoholahti neighbourhood and the Kamppi construction site. These areas represent new city planning, Ruoholahti being the high-tech hub of the town and the huge Kamppi construction site becoming another shopping centre made of glass. It is based on the interviews with visually impaired people. The film is realised in a close collaboration with the blind lead actress Johanna Röholm.

Anu Pennanen works within urban public space and its relation to cinema and media. She is interested in people situated in alienating architectural structures of power. Pennanen has participated in international exhibitions and film festivals since 2004.

Saara Ekström: Phantasma (2016)

In Phantasma: The camera transports the viewer through the dreamlike, delirious and dilapidated rooms of an aquarium that opened in Copenhagen in 1939. The organic merges with the mechanical as time drives these opposite elements towards a joint destruction, creating something new.

Saara Ekström works in film, photography, text and installation. Chronotopes where time and place densify, time that nurtures and erodes, the ambivalent desire to both remember and forget are at the core of her art. Ekström’s work has been shown extensively in various museums and festivals in Europe, the Americas and Asia.

Films featuring the music of Mika Vainio, 18–19 November 2023, Museu Serralves, Porto, Portugal

More information: Serralves

AV-arkki has promoted and distributed Finnish media art since 1989. AV-arkki’s promotional efforts have made the artists’ participation in this event possible. If you want to hear the latest news from our distribution, subscribe to our newsletter!