Pro Artibus is continuing its collaboration with the Art Factory Residency run by the City of Porvoo’s Culture Services. We have a Nordic perspective this time, too, and have chosen to invite the artist Olga Benedicte from Denmark, who will now be working in Porvoo in April and May. During her residency period Benedicte will make a site-specific installation in one of the outhouses in the courtyard of the Kappalaisentalo (Chaplain’s House, Välikatu 13, 06100 Porvoo).
Benedicte’s exhibition opens on May 28 and will run until August 28.
In her art Benedicte works with a focus on the body and the physical phenomena in and around it, and on how technological developments influence it. She calls into question our subjective perspective on looking at the world, seeking ways and means for art to open the way for other understanding of the systems and mechanisms in our living environment. She has, for instance, studied a number of molluscs – including Xenoturbella bocki and piddocks – and their living conditions, behaviour patterns, and adaptation to their habitat. At the same time, her artistic work is rooted in the performative. Her installations and sculptures involve a variety of ingredients referring to the body, time and movement.
Benedicte is an artist who works in multiple materials and techniques. Now, she is in the process of working on a site-specific sculptural installation incorporating, for instance, salt, water, latex and concrete. The work takes its starting point in hydrofeminism, a set of ideas in which the body is given prominence as a container for water. Water is the link that binds us to all living things on a global scale, all changes in water are also changes in us. At the same time, the model breaks down the hierarchy dividing humans from animals. Benedicte’s aim is to study water as a medium that moves in, on and through different materials. Water makes it possible for salts to move and to crystalize in different parts of the work. The outhouse here in the Old Town has neither lighting nor electricity. This makes it a challenging site, but at the same time Benedicte aims to see it as a resource that she can work with.
Olga Benedicte (b. 1988, Denmark) lives and works in Copenhagen. She gained a Master’s in Fine Arts from Jutland Art Academy in 2018, spending 2016-17 on an exchange at the Academy of Fine Arts in Helsinki. She has shown at: Art Sonje Center (Seoul, South Korea); in Denmark in Rønnebæksholm Kunsthal (Næstved), Kunsthal Aarhus (Aarhus), SculptureOdense´21, Hollufgård (Odense), Trapholt – museum of modern art, craft and design (Kolding), and Sculpture Park Billund (Billund), as well as in Helsinki, Finland in Exhibition Laboratory.
Pro Artibus Foundation has Porvoo as its focus area in the years 2021 and 2022. This means that part of the foundation’s activities is focused in Porvoo. Among other things, Pro Artibus collaborates with City of Porvoo Culture Services, Porvoo Art Hall and the Art Factory Residency.
The images are Olga Benedicte’s work-in-progress from the Porvoo residency.