Eye of the Source @ Gallery Pimento, Oulu 22.9.- 17.10.2021

Sound and video art: Jaakko Autio / Narrative of the work: Jaakko Autio & Gillian Crabbe (Akasaka) / Venue: Galleria 5, Pimento, Oulu. / Time: 21.9.- 17.10.2021 / The work has been supported by: TAIKE

Eye of the Source is a multimedia installation that draws on traditions of renewal through rituals made at a holy spring. The spring appears as a symbol for the nature of human existence, the transformation of our temporal nature, and spiritual renewal. The sounds and texts are recordings from the ritual that took place at Someroja fountain (Salo) with Jaakko Autio and Gillian Crabben/Akasaka.

The work consists of a pool of water whose surface resonates with sound, a ritual documented at the source (field recording) and video projection that interacts with the experiencer. Jaakko Autios works often consist a juxtaposition of theses and antitheses. Colliding into synthesis, new insights. In this piece heart and mind, ritual and technology are positioned opposite to each other. The coexistence of the natural and the artificial creates an unusual blank space to contemplate – How i’m i doing today?

Interactive video material from the installation space.

The installation includes three poems

1. Jaakko Autio’s contemplation on the word “Lähde!”

The Word Lähde is a Finnish word with many meanings, depending on the intention you say it. It can mean a spring, fountain or a source, or the verb “Go!”, it can be said as a wish or as a command too. On the 11 minute recording Jaakko Autio contemplates the word “Lähde”, keeping the work, ritual and himself in the state of transformation.

The word contemplation originally meant staying or walking in the territory of the monastery. Reflection and contemplation differ from each other, in reflection a person rearranges the things he or she already knows, his or her opinion. While in contemplation, the questioner goes through a transformation with the word (or thing) he or she is researching. During this active involvement the consciousness position matures, and the person gains more insight about himself and from the relation to the surrounding world.

2. Digha Nikaya, verse 78. (From Sammanaphala Sutta) Performed by Akasaka.

Just as a lake fed by a spring, with no inflow from east, west, north or south, where the rain-god sends moderate showers from time to time, the water welling up from below, mingling with cool water, would suffuse, fill and irradiate that cool water, so that no part of the pool was untouched by it – so, with this delight and joy born of concentration, he so suffuses his body that no spot remains untouched. This,Sire, is a fruit…

3. Uhrilahde/Sacred spring (Akasaka’s own production)

The wellbeing brought by waters pulsing 
through hollows in a pool,
pulsing over earth stained pale,
seeping up, unsullied essence from the Great Earth,
is the heartbeat of the deep unseen
Gently surging, vibrating water’s skin,
Shimmering the sky.
Its secret washes over filmy eyes,
wells up tenderness, clarity, and calm’s release.
And all the while water pours forth what it can
of purity…
flowing into words, 
into white and blue rivulets
a vast delta trickling across the sky.

Opening of the exhibition 22.9.2021

About my friend and artist Gillian Crabbe aka. Akasaka

Akasaka/Gill Crabbe has a long connection to Finland since the first of her many art residencies in Koli, North Karelia in 2006 and her eventual move from the UK some years later to Finland with her Finnish partner. She is an artist, writer and editor, and for several years was an associate teacher in Avoin Taide art school in Helsinki. She is also a meditation teacher and has a particular interest in the overlap between art practice and meditation practice. Her art practice, while grounded in drawing (she has a Masters from   University of the Arts London), extends through a range of media. and is often entwined with ceremonial and transformational ritual in the nature. Akasaka/Gill first met Jaakko Autio on the AARK art residence on the island of Korpoo in the Finnish archipelago in 2020. Her exhibitions in Finland include Tuohta!, Gallen Kallela Museum (2012); Metsa Puhuu, Galleria Rantakasarmi, Suomenlinna (2012) and Koli Environmental Art Festival (2014).

Gillian Crabbe Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/akasakagillart/?hl=fi

Galleria5: https://artoulu.fi/nayttely/jaakko-autio-lahteen-silma