Thursday, February 26, 2015

Time Flies by Esko Mannikko at the Yancey Richardson Gallery / Revision

I have a confession. I get grumpy when I’m hungry. This was no different when I thought to myself, “Why bother looking photographs in person in a gallery if I can see them online?” I am aware of the shallowness of this comment. But this argument was immediately shot down when I saw the exhibition.

This self-taught, Finnish photographer presents a selection of works that vary exponentially during his travels in Finland. From abandoned cars to family photographs, Minnikko’s photographs imply the passage of time, as well as the inevitable decomposition of all materials: those animate or inanimate. The rusty metal colors resemble the decay, as if it was melting away from the photograph itself. The subject matter adds to this; yet there is an evident beauty behind the silent aging of the every day materials.

            Perhaps the most intriguing component of this exhibition isn’t the photographs themselves, but the convincing presentation. The carefully selected frames for each photograph lead a peculiarity that compliments the photographs. In addition, the tight row of display of the photographs creates an irony that is a tribute to the relationship between photography and painting. It creates a delightful visual experience, where the singularity of works compliment each another with their character, wit, and unpredictability. It’s refreshing enough to persuade one to think that hunger was worth the while after all.


  1. Your review was funny and insightful. I like how you started out and ended with your hungry state, but I think you could downplay it. I'd like to hear more about Mannikko's composition, subject matters, and attention to color. Since you bring up the matter of simply seeing a photographer's work on their website, how would you say the curation of the show affected your experience of the works? I agree that the framing compliments the works to create a quirkiness. You could describe the frames a bit. As an archivist, I really love how you stated that his "photographs imply the passage of time, as well as the inevitable collapse of all materials." Too true!

  2. Hi Joe,

    I thought your review is very interesting to read! You have emphasized the frames were carefully chosen by the photographer make the exhibition does not only exist on the computer screen which is a very good point. However I wish I could hear more about either how the content of photographs related to the trip that you mentioned in the beginning or some other thoughts from looking at the images.

    Good job!