Riikka Kuoppala

Kuvataideakatemia, Helsinki

Finnish Academy of Fine Arts, Helsinki


Under a Burning City is a short film about the scars that war has left behind on the architecture of Helsinki and in the souls of the Finnish population. The film’s main characters – a grandmother (75) and Ilona (12) – are trying to find a common language with which they will be able to tell each other about their fears. But it is not easy to understand another era, even if the traumas of the past are told by those who experienced the time first-hand. The film’s characters live their memories like stories that help them to survive moments of crisis of identity. Although there is no doubt that questions of one’s presentation and the representation of past events are always associated with power, the film cannot be understood as being straightforwardly political. The artist is asking: whose stories do we listen to? In other words, history is the official history?

Riikka Kuoppala


*1980, FIN


2010 M.F.A, Finnish Academy of Fine Arts, Helsinki
2008 – 2009 Carnegie Mellon University, M.F.A. exchange studies, Pittsburgh
2007 Bachelor of Fine Art, TAMK University of Applied Sciences, School of Art and Media, Tampere
2000 – 2006 Helsinki University, Faculty of Science, Mathematics
2002 – 2003 Muurla Institute of Photography

Solo Exhibitions
2010 Mom, I’m Hungry!, Sanoma House Media Piazza, Helsinki
2009 The Girl Is My Memory, Kuvataideakatemian galleria, Helsinki
2009 Mom, I’m Hungry!, Alkovi Galleria, Helsinki
2008 Visitor in My Body, Ellis Gallery, Pittsburgh
2007 Aamupissa, The Finnish Labour Museum Werstas, Tampere
2006 Silloin nimeni olisi Anitta, Galleria Rajatila, Tampere
2006 Sinua, sinua, Galleria K, Helsinki
2005 Katoamispisteitä, Taidepanimo, Lahti
2005 Perhekuvia, Ikuinen Galleria, Tampere

Group Exhibitions (selection)
2010 Hel-Pitts-Sinki-Burgh, Galleria Fafa, Helsinki
2010 Kuvan kevät 2010, Finnish Academy of Fine Arts M.F.A. thesis show, Helsinki
2009 Nuoret 2009, Kunsthalle Helsinki
2009 Kuala Lumpur Triennial Six: Artifice, Annexe Gallery, Kuala Lumpur
2009 Infinity Show, UnSmoke Systems Gallery, Braddock
2009 Nuo talonpoikaisolennot, Ateneum Art Museum, Helsinki
2008 Alex Kurzweil Project, The Frame Gallery, Pittsburgh
2008 TAF – Tampere Art Factory, Tr1, Tampere
2008 Masterclass, group exhibition, FAFA Gallery, Helsinki
2006 AVO Art Festival, Labor Museum Werstas, Tampere
2006 Rassut, Rajataide ry’s 10th anniversary exhibition, TR-1, Tampere
2006 Autonome fair, Finnish Institute in Paris
2006 At the Other End of No. 3, MAA-TILA, Helsinki
2006 Kehotus, Myymälä2, Helsinki

Public Screenings (selection)
2010 Loop Video Art Festival, Barcelona
2010 Open Screening, Galleri Sinne
2009 Arctic Hysteria Onscreen, Ludwig Museum, Budapest
2008 Lens Politica, film and media art festival, Helsinki
2008 Arctic Hysteria Onscreen, The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), New York City
2008 Noche En Blanco, Instituto Iberoamericano de Finlandia, Madrid
2008 54th International Short Film Festival Oberhausen, International Competition
2008 Tampere Film Festival, Tampere
2007 Nordisk Panorama, NP07: New Nordic Voices competition, Oulu
2007 Asema tapetilla art festival, Toijala
2007 Kinos07 film and video festival, Lahti
2007 Tampere Art Film Festival, Tampere
2007 Vera festival, Mariehamn, Åland
2007 Special screening of Like Mother, Like Daughter, cinema theatre Niagara, Tampere
2006 Videokanava, Galleria Huoltamo, Tampere
2006 Naiskulttuuripäivät, women’s culture festival, cinema theatre Niagara, Tampere
2005 VALOSTA Video Art Festival, Keskustori (Central Square), Tampere
2005 Huuto Videolounge, Galleria Huuto in Uudenmaankatu, Helsinki
2005 Backlight 05, Seventh International Photographic Triennale in Tampere, opening club

Grants and Scholarships
2010 Art Council of Finland, one-year grant for artistic practice
2010 Art Society of Finland, grant for young artists
2010 Kesko Oyj, scholarship
2009 Arts Council of Finland, travel grant
2008 Walden Foundation, study grant
2008 AVEK, writing grant
2008 Finnish Academy of Fine Arts, grant for studies abroad
2008 Finnish Film Foundation, travel grant
2008 FRAME Finnish Fund for Art Exchange, project grant
2008 Arts Council of Finland, project grant
2008 TAMK University of Applied Sciences, scholarship
2007 VISEK (Center for Supporting Visual Culture, Finland), project grant
2007 Finnish Cultural Foundation, project grant