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Solo exhibition in Kuva Gallery Helsinki in November 2008
polymer and monotype prints / installation

The first thing you notice is that the whole gallery floor is covered with black and white squares. The first impression is harmonious: big black and white prints on paper. Soon you think of a big chess board with its movable pieces. As soon as you enter the room you become part of the game. Spectator has to make his/her mind to either enter on black or white zone: on the right side there is a firm group of riot policemen facing three hooded figures on the left. Silent news anchor is reading news in the corner- only his lips are moving. What a peculiar group there is: two men wearing bunny costumes, a woman blindfolded with a piece of cloth, portrait of a hero boxer framed in gold among others.
There is a particularly interesting little oval shaped frame on your way as you proceed to the other end of the room. Instead of printed image there is an actual hole on the wall. Suddenly the empty darkness is ready to swallow you when you gaze through the hole into the black darkness. The single thing you can discern is your own reflection reminding of a silhouette of crescent moon - like looking one’s soul there in the emptiness. Next to the deep hole there is a life-size horse looking towards the last room.
There are three characters in the last room: the boxer now seen from head to toes, the mysterious blinded woman once again and another female: an obvious queen. The whole floor covering chess pattern transforms into her mighty essence, ending there in her black and white dress – or more like the queen is the source for the entire game pattern.
Maria Matikka has made a summary of the show for everyone to read. She tells that she got her inspiration from the Book of Revelation, the last book of the Bible that talks about final judgement. Postmodern world settles for saying that good and bad are relative; yes it is confusing to stand there between the riot police and the rebel. Who can say who’s playing good this time? Television goes on telling what’s been happening in the world, moving image looks old, like a vision that has been shown thousands of times before. There’s only one joyful character in the exhibition, the blindfolded woman, Faith is her name. Maria tells how the huge grey horse is an image taken straight from the Book of Revelation. One of the earth scourging horsemen, the Death, is riding on a grey horse. The framed black hole next to the horse gives a glimpse of its darkness.
The queen of the chess game, namely the Babylon, feels content with the situation. She has settled the playground and keeps herself in the background. Revelations of the Bible defines her as a filthy woman, drunk from the blood of God’s martyrs, who is going to be destroyed when the time is right. There is no rescue inside the game; the salvation must reach us from outside.
You head back to where you started; on your way to the door you notice a cunning little cat. And then there is a fish, a symbol of the early church.

Tommi Matikka

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