The prominent Israeli artist Yael Bartana has been commissioned to make the main artwork for next year’s IHME Contemporary Art Festival in Helsinki. She is known for her photographs, films and installations that deal with questions of national identity. Key concepts here are “Homeland” and “Belonging”. Bartana investigates these ideas through ceremonies and public rituals intended to strengthen the collective identity of the nation state. The artist sparked controversy at the 54th Venice Biennale in 2011 with a video installation that documented the work of a political grouping founded by Bartana herself, its goal being the repatriation of 3.3 million Jews to Poland.
In her 2014 IHME Project, under the working title True Finn – Tosi suomalainen, Bartana will take up a highly topical issue to explore the definition of ‘Finnish’. She asks: What are we talking about when we talk about Finnish identity right now? How does national identity operate as a means of inclusion and exclusion? What mechanisms exist for this in Finland? The project is a communal experiment for which an open call for participants will take place.
Video introduction and more about the artist and the IHME Project 2014: www.ihmehelsinki.fi
The IHME Contemporary Art Festival will give the public its first chance to experience Bartana’s works in Finland. Yael Bartana’s (b. 1970) works have been shown in leading biennials and museums around the world: 7th Berlin Biennale (2012); the Polish Pavilion at the 54th Venice Biennale (2011); Documenta 12 (2007); 29th São Paolo Biennial (2010); MoMA PS1 New York; Vienna Secession; London’s Tate Gallery; and many more.
The IHME Days, April 4-6, 2014, Old Student House, Helsinki.
Further information and requests to interview Yael Bartana:
IHME Contemporary Art Festival
Executive Director Paula Toppila, firstname.lastname@example.org, +358 (0)45 1240096
Press material and photos:
www.ihmehelsinki.fi > Media
Please request a username and password from Assistant Vappu Tainio, email@example.com, +358 (0)45 632 6267