Kaisu Koivisto

Helsinki, Finland

»Patterns«, plan for installation
Collage cut outs, dimensions variable
Photo printed on canvas, 300 x 450 cm
Gastatelier, Ateliers Höherweg 271
February – March 2020

Installation in Process: Patterns


My artistic practice traverses photography, drawing and video as well as sculptural elements. These diverse strands come together in the framework of installations. The topics of my photographs and installations have a connecting aspect: the transience of materials. I photograph buildings and structures in places which are either in a process of destruction or, on the other hand, being constructed. The materials of my installations are mostly salvaged and bear traces of wear and tear, thus indicating the passage of time. I am interested in an ambivalent aesthetic, the simultaneity of attractiveness and repulsiveness, the synthetic and the organic, stark geometry and the ornamental.


I began my working process at Ateliers Höherweg without specific plans. Staying at a residency is a unique chance to learn new things and to experiment with an open mind. I began to make collages as a way to get started and experiment with a material which is usually abundantly available: paper.


My collages developed into a combination of collage and cut outs. I ended up with a crown-like form with which I began to compose a wall-sized installation. Patterns began to emerge from attaching parts on the wall – patterns create order. I wanted to pair the collage cut outs with a photo which shows the swimming pool of a former Soviet military site in Poland. The geometric grid forms of the swimming pool building and the organically wavy shapes of the collages complement each other into an installation Patterns.


Kaisu Koivisto’s stay at the Ateliers Höherweg residency was supported by the Finnish Cultural Foundation.



The thematic focus of Kaisu Koivisto’s artistic practice is rooted in the notions of place, history and landscape, and in the different ways in which environments are represented. Her work tell more about people than nature: about the commodification of nature, the production of raw materials and the symbolical and allegorical aspects of natural phenomena.


Koivisto’s interests are deeply rooted in the North, its landscapes and political dimensions. Her interest in history has led her to explore abandoned Cold War era military areas in Eastern Europe.


Her latest ongoing project New Nuuk focuses on the urbanization of Nuuk, the capital of Greenland. The city is changing rapidly, with new suburbs being built amid the barren and majestic landscape.


Kaisu Koivisto is based in Helsinki, Finland. She has an MFA from the University of Art and Design Helsinki. Koivisto´s work have been shown for instance in the following institutions: Museo Hendrik Christian Andersen, Rome; Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art, Helsinki; Reina Sofia Museum, Madrid; PS 1, New York; Mark Rothko Art Centre, Daugavpils, Latvia; Kumu Art Museum, Tallinn, Estonia; Tokyo Metropolitan Museum, Galleria Sculptor, Helsinki; Pori Art Museum, Pori.