Food Waste 22 February – 28 May 2017
address: Virka-gallery, Sofiankatu 1, Helsinki
It is estimated that around one third of all food produced around the world is wasted each year. Through their photography and video art, artists Filippo Zambon, tok kosie and Freya Najade have turned their attention to the contradictions inherent in food waste. In the hands of these artists, waste can be transformed into aesthetic experiences and yet, simultaneously, art also has the power to lay bare the secrets hidden below the surface. The exhibition also showcases posters about food waste created by students of Helsinki Upper Secondary School of Visual Arts.
Filippo Zambon: Into the Bin
Into the bin is the first part of an ongoing project about the effects of waste on society and the environment. The project aims to expose and criticize the consumerist attitude of a part of society and the mentality of the business market, which consider profit as the only achievement.
The first part of the project is about food waste. The photographs depict the contents of supermarket trash bins. The images represent waste food as beautiful “nature morte” that aesthetically contrasts with the policy of immediately disposing of expired or almost-expired items.
Most of the food disposed of by grocery stores is still perfectly edible.
to kosie: trash
When does food become trash? Is it the moment when it is thrown into the trash bin? to kosie’s video work titled ’trash’ was inspired by her experiences as a waiter working breakfast shifts at various hotels in Helsinki. to kosie couldn’t believe the amount of food she was throwing away after hotel guests had finished their buffet-style breakfasts. Taking home the perfectly edible and untouched food was forbidden, so in the evenings in order to save money, to kosie would go dumpster diving and take food from supermarket trash bins.
Using a spy camera, to kosie decided to record the two opposite actions she was practicing almost daily.
Freya Najade: Misfits
Nowadays, fruits and vegetables have to meet specific aesthetic standards set by supermarkets before they can be sold in their stores. Guidelines establish the exact size, shape and colour each variety should comply with.
In ‘Misfits’ I photograph fruits and vegetables that failed to meet these specifications and as a result, got either thrown away or processed into juice or soup. The marks, shape and colour for which these varieties were deselected didn’t have any impact on their taste. Growers got about five per cent of the price they would have received for a product that met the standards.
Food or trash?
The students attending the course Kuvataide ja valokuva (“Fine arts and photography”) at Helsingin kuvataidelukio study food waste in Finland. The students sum up their thought about food waste on posters.
Helsingin kuvataidelukio – Torkkeli – is a special upper secondary school, which specialises in fine arts. The school offers broad tuition in fine arts and visual culture. The school has some 560 students. You can follow the school’s everyday life and image flow by reading the webzine Hetkiä ja kuvakulmia (“Moments and perspectives”). www.kuvislukio.koulublogit.fi
Evdokia Asseeva, Sonja Auer, Inti Cruz, Nicolas Guerrero Donoso, Jesmiina Helin, Ada Ikonen, Kare Hyvämäki, Anni Jurvanen, Elisabeth Juusu, Teadora Kankaanpää, Annina Kauppila, Tuuli Kentta, Jerri Keto, Silvia Kiviranta, Veera Kotisara, Aino Kuivila, Marika Lahdenperä, Elina Latvaniemi, Auri Lukkarinen, Anni Matikainen, Lilja Mettälä, Saara Myllylä, Vilma Myllyniemi, Aurora Myyry, Paavo Pakkanen, Suvi Pensala, Mona Rantala, Sara Reinilä, Rosa Sikorski, Jenna Torniainen, Juulia Varis, Jenni Vesanen, Carla Vuontela, Ida Wåg.
The exhibition forms part of the Festival of Political Photography 2017. Read more about the festival here.