Short films by Maija Blåfield, Pink Twins, Marja Helander, Arttu Nieminen and Milja Viita at Uppsala Short Film Festival

This year’s Uppsala Short Film Festival is held on October 23–29, 2023 in Uppsala, Sweden. The festival features Maija Blåfield’s Scenic View (2023, in featured image) and Pink Twins’ The Transient (2023) in competition, while Marja Helander’s Áfruvvá (Mermaid) (2022), Arttu Nieminen’s Muohtačalmmit (2022) and Milja Viita’s Delight at Robert St. (2023) are shown in special screenings.

International Competition 11: Into the great Outdoors

Pink Twins’ The Transient and Maija Blåfield’s Scenic View, distributed in collaboration between AV-arkki and Raina Film Festival Distribution, compete in the International Competition 11, titled Into the Great Outdoors, taking place Thursday October 26 at 3pm and Friday October 27 at 1pm in Fyris.

Finland has the most forest in Europe, but primeval forest has become so rare that it feels fictional. Is it now the enchanted forest? Is a commercial forest real? As nature documentaries are staged, are they fiction? Scenic View is a film about how we look at a forest landscape and the reality.

Maija Blåfield is a multidisciplinary contemporary artist and film director. Her cinematic works navigate the grounds between experimental film and documentary film. In addition, Blåfield also works with photography and writing, among other media. Blåfield’s works typically address the ambiguity of reality, experiencing our everyday life differently, and the human relationship with the environment. 

Pink Twins: The Transient (2023)

What is The Transient? It is that fleeting moment when you question what you are seeing, when uncanny valley takes over and when harmonious wildlife is revealed as a monstrous result of cloning and obsessive manipulation of nature. Or the moment when you ignore the lure of the real and give in to the overwhelming beauty of growth, the blooming of spring and the glow of midsummer night. Real, based on a true story, artificial, imaginary, a natural paradise, an apocalyptic corruption of nature. The Transient is all of these things and more.

Pink Twins was formed in 1997 by brothers Juha and Vesa Vehviläinen, artists, filmmakers and electronic musicians, born and raised in Helsinki, Finland. Since starting in the hotbed of arts and underground music that was turn-of-the-millennium Helsinki, Pink Twins have polished their musical and visual output into a distinctive and superimmersive audiovisual mayhem.

Special screening: Sámi Shorts

Marja Helander’s Áfruvvá (Mermaid) (2022) and Arttu Nieminen’s Muohtačalmmit (2022) take part in the thematic screenings titled Sámi Shorts, taking place Wednesday October 25 at 7pm in Regina and Saturday October 29 at 5pm in Fyris.

Marja Helander (b.1965) is a Finnish photographic and video artist. She graduated from the University of Art and Design in Helsinki in 1999. Her earlier work explored her own identity between the Finnish and the Sámi culture. Helander’s recent photographic work has focused on Northern landscape. The accent of the work is on the postcolonial topics in the Sámi area, focusing particularly on the global mining industry. The encounter between nature and mankind is not harmonious, but destructive. On the other hand, her video works are playful, exploring the contradiction between the traditional Sámi way of life and the modern society.

Arttu Nieminen is a visual artist and filmmaker from Rovaniemi. Сoncentrated on momentary being and presence, he portrays this vision with rather minimal elements, clinging to him during the travels.

Special screening: Cats and Dogs – a Symphony in Film

Milja Viita: Delight at Robert St. (2023)

Milja Viita’s Delight at Robert St. (2023) will be shown in the screening titled Cats and Dogs – a Symphony in Film, taking place Monday October 23 at 7pm and Saturday October 28 at 5pm in Regina.

Buddy, an old stray cat in Toronto, had managed to conquer a small territory of his own in the city center. The filmmaker met Buddy’s gaze every time she went out. She befriended her neighbor and captured his last autumn with her old 35mm hand cranked movie camera. Delight at Robert St. is a visual poem about the everyday moments that shape our lives.

Milja Viita‘s (b.1974) installations and films consist of experimental and documentary elements. Her works have been exhibited in e.g. Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma, Kunsthalle Helsinki, Mänttä Art Festival and in film and media art festivals internationally. Milja Viita lives and works in Porvoo, Finland. She graduated with MFA degree in Time and Space Arts from the Academy of Fine Arts in Helsinki in 2005.

Uppsala Short Film Festival, October 23–29, 2023, Uppsala, Sweden

More information: Uppsala Short Film Festival

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!