Nathaniel Mellors and Erkka Nissinen Will Represent Finland at 57th Venice Biennale

The artists, known for their irreverent and humorous works, will explore Finnish clichés.

Erkka Nissinen and Nathaniel Mellors. Photo Ugo Carmeni, courtesy Frame Contemporary Art Finland.

The artists Nathaniel Mellors and Erkka Nissinen have been selected to represent Finland at the 57th Venice Biennale, which opens in May, with an exhibition titled “The Aalto Natives.”

The exhibition will be curated by Xander Karskens, artistic director at Cobra Museum of Modern Art in Amstelveen, Finland.

The representatives have been selected though an open call process. Their proposal has been commissioned and will be produced by Frame Contemporary Art Finland, an organisation that supports and promotes Finnish art at home and abroad, funded by the Finnish Ministry of Culture.

Finland’s Pavilion at the Venice Biennale 2017 is commissioned by Frame Contemporary Art Finland. Courtesy of Frame Contemporary Art Finland

Finland’s Pavilion at the Venice Biennale 2017 is commissioned by Frame Contemporary Art Finland. Photo courtesy of Frame Contemporary Art Finland.

“We selected the proposal because the ideas it presented were amongst the most captivating, surprising and artistically diverse,” the Frame open call jury said in a statement. ”We are confident that it will generate debate and be a highly engaging experience for the audience.”

British Mellors and Finnish Nissinen have a reputation for narrative and comedic work and they will be taking the Alvar Aalto-designed Finnish pavilion and transforming it into an multi-media, immersive experience.

The installation will feature animatronics, video, and sculpture to create a synonymy of dialog, image, and choreography.

The exhibition will explore clichés in Finnish history and national identity through the artists’ irreverent style.

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