© Selim Projects

Now is Always

11 June - 13 August 2016
The Bakery House, Brinkhall Manor, Turku, Finland

The exhibition Now is Always was created together with architect and designer Susanna Raunio in an 18th century bakery building undergoing a renovation process toward an exhibition venue. In its state of flux, the space was turned into a series of site-specific installations and interventions that looked into the definitions and experiences of time, history and space through a collage of images, places, things and architecture.

It appears ironic that on one hand understanding the passage of time in our human lives comes quite naturally on the other hand, it remains extremely theoretical and hard to grasp. Nevertheless, mornings, nights, summer, winter, patina, cracking paint, growth rings, childhood, old age and other sensory processes continuously turn the invisible progression of time in the universe into something visible. Time, as the fourth dimension, is merely a distance between perceived events occurring in the three dimensional space.

Time is also a form of convention. Historical environments and stories of times gone by often hold special appeal. Historical and cultural habits and popular understandings easily affect the ways in which we observe spaces, the objects they contain and the memories or sensations they invoke. Things perceived as ‘Old’ or ‘New’ are not just objectively measurable intervals of observed events in space. We also attach values, knowledge, feelings and aesthetics into our findings.

But what happens when our conventions change? How does the observational space change if our understanding of the passage of time comes to include a thought; That each passing moment, event, idea or action transforming the surroundings is always present?

In this exhibition, the Bakery House appears as a changing, temporally continuous and abstract space. Its rooms, the series of spaces, walls, ceilings, floors, windows and doors are present in the current time, and yet we can speculate their origins or the events and reasons in the past that have impacted their current physical form. Instead of recounting the known historical narrative of the space, works in the exhibition focus on examining the varied (and at times temporary) atmospheres of the spaces, both inside and outside of temporal conventions. Installations and site-specific spatial interventions frame our observations in the contemporary moment.

Thus, objects, actions and images presented in the exhibition ultimately relate to questions of our own consciousness as historical actors in our cultural and material environments. What to keep, to buy, to remove or discard? What guides our ambitions to choose, to observe or record glimpses of time?

Does every moment count?

© Susanna Raunio & Selim Projects 2016