Rodney Graham's solo exhibition 'Artists and Models' at Serlachius Museums, Finland
27 October 2020
Now on view until April 2021, the Serlachius Museum in Mänttä, Finland, presents 'Artists and Models', a selection of major work by Rodney Graham. Exhibiting for the first time in Finland, the Vancouver-based artist’s solo show comprises around 30 works from the past 15 years. Nine lightboxes, bearing self-portraits in the guise of various artistic types and personas in intricately staged environments, are presented alongside a mise-en-scene of accompanying objects, sculptures and paintings. Relating to, or often featuring in the photographs, these cast a strange temporal dimension upon the nature of the images’ making. Like props for an elaborate play of sorts, the objects ask to be seen as artefacts from Graham’s staged worlds which, employing strategies of quotation and adaptation, seem at once palpably familiar yet unplaceable, and ultimately unreal.
Using a postmodern mode of address – with a playful, poetic irony and subtle sense of nostalgia for the obsolete – the complex layers of cultural history are first woven and then made to unravel, mixing references to high and low culture, real objects, events, and the collective imagination that holds them in place. Curator Timo Valjakka notes that in each of Graham’s monumental works, “every detail counts.”
An introduction to 'Artists and Models' from Serlachius Museum director Pauli Sivonen, Rodney Graham and Timo Valjakka can be viewed here.