The air is thick with salt. The echo of the waves is absorbed within the wind. The salt has dissolved the rock as the sunlight and the sea water press themselves against it. The surface of the rocks is rough, like sucked candy. The skin evaporates and turns into sand. The nails become brittle, until they are transformed into seashells. The mouth blows tall bubbles through the tongue. Eyelids turn transparent, the vision is unbroken.

The exhibition Sun Drawing on the Skin of a Rock is a collection that examines landscape photography. The exhibition consists of photographic sculptures and a soundscape. The photographic sculptures are constructed of photographs printed on canvas with varying techniques in combination with wooden and plaster structures. The artist’s work is informed by curiosity towards landscape photography, its materiality and its perceptible and substantial qualities. The works approach photography as a conduit for presence, touch, and material connections. The works also seek to discover an emotional sense of identification with a vanishing world that is being covered in a searing and almost blindingly bright light, a soft haze, and finally the absence of light: darkness.

Journeys by land on the different coasts of the Atlantic provide the premise for the artist’s work. The photographs which form the basis for the works have been taken e.g. in Portugal and Iceland. Time spent near water has been a part of a corporeal study which has guided the artist towards the three-dimensional shapes of the works. Eventually the sculptures themselves seemingly transform into set pieces depicting places, memories and experiences.

Emilia Pennanen is an artist working in Helsinki. She works with photography, sculpture, text and sound. The starting point of her artistic process is always photography, which she prints onto various materials and converts into photographic sculptures. An integral part of her artistic process is spending time and being present at a location, as it guides her manner of taking photographs. At times the works are shaped into an auditory and spatial form in the exhibition space. Experimentalism, the use of multiple materials, and working methods that expand the limits of photography are a part of her process. Her goal is to reconfigure the experience of the landscape through photography. Pennanen has a master’s degree in art from Aalto University’s master studies programme in photography (2022) and a bachelor’s degree in photography from the Maryland Institute College of Art in the USA (2014). Her works have appeared in solo exhibitions in Finland and in the United States, as well as in group exhibitions in Finland, Portugal, the United States and Great Britain.