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14.01.08 - 01.02.08

Shoji Kato, Janne Kiiskilä, Petra Koivisto, Juhani Koivumäki, Ville Löppönen, Minna Mäkelä, Eeva-Maija Priha, Panu Rytkönen

Opening: 6pm Friday 11 January 2008

Exhibition Open: Monday-Friday 10-4pm, 14 January - 1 February

The Manchester School of Art is pleased to present ÅÖÄ, a new exhibition from the Academy of Fine Art in Helsinki. This is the fourth in an ongoing series of exchange exhibitions between the graduates of the MA Fine Art course in Manchester and the Masters students from the Academy. Over the four years, the exchange has involved a diverse range of work and artistic practices and has enabled the young participants to experience the equally diverse cultural climate and critical responses in the two respective cities.

The work in ÅÖÄ, selected by Pavel Büchler and Ian Rawlinson, is characterized as much by the attention to the sense of trace, the index of the artists mark, as by the deployment of sentiment via popular imagery. It includes subtle pencil drawings on birch plywood by Minna Mäkelä, Petra Koivistoís delicate monotypes inspired by the northern light of the Baltics, and immaculate abstract watercolours by the Japanese American Shoji Kato.

Critical references to the artists' touch and to politics and cultural history coexist in the project "With Love" by Eeva-Maija Priha, a series of photographs depicting the young woman kissing public statutes of notable historical figures found in towns and cities in her native Finland, and in Panu Rytkönenís hand-carved architectural models informed by both vernacular craft and Philosophy.

In a contrast to these, Juhani Koivumäki makes short films about human relationships in the tradition of narrative cinema, Janne Kiiskilä produces grotesque sculptures that draw on popular cartoon imagery and Ville Löppönen paints "super-realist" pictures of himself as a cartoon superhero alongside his mum in her anorak.

The Manchester graduates have shown their work, selected by Petri Kaverma, in Helsinki in November 2007.

For further information, please contact Ian Rawlinson,