Titanik Galleria in Turku hosts the SUMU Artists in Residence program. It is a non-profit gallery nestled in the riverbank in the oldest part of Turku and it specializes in new media art. I was fortunate to be the artist in residence for the month of September 2012. The gallery provides the artist with a studio-space adjacent to the exhibition space. It was a stimulating environment to work in. I used my time there to produce three short stop-frame animations and a collage work, and I hosted a one-day video animation workshop for the public.
A one-night-only exhibition, titled Going the Dissonance, marked the end of my residency period. The three stop-frame videos produced during the SUMU residency serve as a visual experiment. The process was centered on the question: How does one relate a personal experience of a foreign space in a visual manner?
The three videos and collage produced is an attempt to make sense of the differences between Turku and Cape Town. There are a number of similarities between the two cities. Most notably, both are the ‘mother cities’ of their countries – both cities were the birthplace of the first cathedrals, the first castles and the first universities. However, a distinctive part of Cape Town’s social geography remains entirely missing in Turku – informal settlements or shanty towns. The historical cathedral and the castle are the sites that I associate with my stay in Turku, but for some visitors in Cape Town the sights that they will remember are the splendor of Table Mountain and that which it overshadows – thousands of tiny shacks. The disparity of wealth is a major problem in South Africa and it is a topic that is difficult to deal with.