• Katariina Guthwert: Wishing Well , Galleria Huuto

Katariina Guthwert

Wishing Well

Huuto II 21.8.-13.9.2020

Katariina Guthwert
Wishing Well
21 August–13 September 2020

Katariina Guthwert’s exhibition is like a secret garden with its bowls and fountains made of red clay that was dug from Helsinki’s Central Park. In her exhibition, Guthwert examines the life cycle of western art history, the carbon footprint of art and the future of the seas and humans.

“Clay consists of earth minerals. After firing it is eternal, even if it breaks. Thanks to the durability of ceramics, we have been able to find ancient ceramic items and learned things about lost cultures. Today’s people, on the other hand, will leave too much behind, more than pieces of ceramic pots.

The clay from Central Park used to be part of the seabed, just like all soil in Helsinki. This wild clay is an unpredictable material that cracks easily. It contains organic matter and stones. The cracks tell stories about the earth’s crust. Some of the works have not been fired and therefore their carbon footprint is close to zero. When returned to nature, unfired clay will again become part of the soil as it gets wet in the rain. Sea clay may also be the soil for our future food that will grow in algae gardens under the sea.

The habit of throwing coins into a fountain originated at a time when drinkable water was hard to find and people had to thank higher powers for clean water by giving a small gift. In the exhibition’s garden, the algae-covered bowls have overflown and the drinking fountains have dried up. People have left the market squares and the fountain edges are empty. The exhibition was influenced by a train trip to Venice after the floods. Mold, algae and moss had created spots on the walls and taken over artistic treasures. Disused wells used for collecting rainwater cover 10% of the city’s area.”

Katariina Guthwert (b. 1979) is not only known as a visual artist but also as a jewelry designer.