Galleri Flach

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Jorma Puranen: 2012

Galleri Flach are proud to present our third exhibition with the Finnish artist Jorma Puranen. The exhibition features works from three different series that reflect both his earlier and most recent works: Shadows, Reflections and All That Sort of Thing, Sixteen Steps to Paradise and a series of new images from the past year.

For many visitors, Jorma Puranens portrait series is already familiar and has fascinated many beholders. In these photographes we encounter old portrait paintings from museums and private collections, which Jorma Puranen started to photograph already in 1991. He has for many years been fascinated by museum collections and archives of older paintings, which in this series particularly focus on to the paintings’ surface and light reflections. Instead of emphasising the relation of the original and the copy, he wants to draw our attention to the photographic process itself and the complexity of the gaze. By using intensive light he wants to draw attention to the surface of the painting and the interplay that emerges between the portrait and the paintings’ glare and reflections.

Jorma Puranen ask: ”What any other medium [than photography] deals so expressively with the play of light and shadow? For him, the photopraphy’s capacity to register shadows and reflections is a unique quality. At the same time he uses the light as a metaphor to establish a link between past and present time, its duration and recollection over the years.

In the second series, Sixteen Steps to Paradise, the artist continues to explore the complexity and interplay of light and shadow in images depicted from his own garden. Here we follow an intensive interaction between light and reflections which almost creates hallucinatory images of deformed shapes of plants. There is a strong sense of both beauty and deprivation in these spectacular photographies.

In his most recent work Puranen’s use of long exposure is even more accentuated. The long duration of exposure establish its own interpretation of reality, creating almost abstract compositions. Jorma Puranens photographs have always eluded the viewer’s gaze through its painterly qualities. In these recent works the distinction between painting and photography seem to be quite blurred and no longer relevant, just focusing on the interplay between darkness and light, and what is created in between.