Johanna Talja

‘I love the making of work more than having pristine and perfect results’

How can we recognize your work? ,,I work very intuitively and embrace all my errors and a kind of clumsiness that comes with it. This aspect is also enhanced by how much I like to use humour in my work. I love the making of work more than having pristine, perfect results and I let that show.”

How do you start a new project? ,,I start with a theme or idea that I find interesting and begin experimenting with one aspect of it. The experimentation can be anything from material experiments, video and performance experiments to experimentation on 3D-modelling software and editing, whatever it may be depending on the topic and what it makes me feel like I should do, I do it.”

Johanna Talja

What kind of artists inspires you? ,,A huge inspiration is Erkka Nissinen, with very absurd yet wonderful work, fully tapping into the potential of a strange Finnish sense of humour. In his own words he always ”tries not to make art, but ends up with art everytime”. Another one is installation artist Hito Steyerl. I really like how she approaches topics and how she utilizes the making of; how she found out and what happened during the research in her work as a central part of the work itself.”

What is the reason you joined Vensterbank? ,,I really like the space and opportunity to show work to an audience that might not have an interest in art or ever go out of their way to go to a gallery or museum, instead the work comes to them.”

What does the city Leiden mean to you? ,,Leiden I’ve been to many times, know a lot of people from it’s area, it’s a wonderful city. I live and work in Utrecht and I don’t have the opportunity to travel all the time but I love to explore new places.”

Your work is exhibited in a former all you can eat-restaurant. What would you order if it was still there? ,,I would ask how ‘all you can eat’ it truly was. Can you eat the plates and cutlery aswell?”

Anti-information.exe (2017)
Untitled/Research (2019)
Into The Forest (2018)
Windows Has Crashed (2018)

Johanna Talja (1994) is a Finnish multi-media, performance and installation artist who’s work revolves around an exploration of cinematic, performative media and relations between the on-stage and behind the stage. In her work Talja approaches topics and ideas with humour and seeks to find a balance between the absurd and the sensical, fake and real by combining the handmade and tactile sculptural elements with digital, artificial effects and refrences. She creates her own props, costumes and props, through which she creates characters and scenes through improvisational performances, resulting in the creation of another separate dimension trapped somewhere between the screen, the backstage, the viewer, the artist, the physical and the digital.

As an idea for the exhibtion I will make a short video installation of a slice of an alternate universe where certain future-predictions from the past happened just as they predicted, such as space travel being a common consumer thing and the futuristic aesthetic from the 80’s and 90’s, though dated now, would actually be current.