Page 20 - Matti Kalkamo / RAW
P. 20

Kalkamo’s path as a son of man and an artist has gone through the psychobilly and punk years of his youth – which obviously have left their mark – the Liminka School of Art and the Kankaanpää Art School (now called SAMK) back to his atelier in his hometown and to subcultures. Punk music plays at Kalkamo’s atelier and his home as well, and his interest in topics such as South American death culture is evident in the form of things like souvenirs. The same things have also found their way into Kalkamo’s art: Kalkamo’s works exhibit life and death, a brash attitude towards the fleeting nature of everything, boldness and anarchism – just like the life of a true punk should. Kalkamo’s works are still “ringing” with his attitude towards life; rough rock’n’roll is evident in the subjects of his works, their form and expression, and in his newer works, in an increasingly verbalized form. The textual art side of conceptual art increasingly forces itself to become the primary form of the work, as it obviously should. The message is condensed, the expression is simplified, tunes have been condensed into miniature- length punk songs. Tampere’s very own Giacometti has turned into the John Cage of Kaleva neighbourhood.
In the introductions of local visual artists in the basement of the Tampere Art Museum, we have moved from those of pensionary age to the middle-aged. Still in his early 50s, Kalkamo has a long career ahead of him. The concurrent timing of the RAW exhibition with the exhibition of the Young Artist of the Year 2021, Joel Slotte, is a fortunate coincidence. Slotte’s gothic-inspired works and Kalkamo’s art fit together seamlessly, like instruments playing in harmony!
In addition to the exhibition at the Tampere Art Museum, one can spot Matti Kalkamo’s works in the public collections of the City of Tampere in places such as the Tullikamari Klubi, the yard of the Sampo School, and most recently, the Hakametsä underpass. They too are filled with an attitude.
Tampere, 27 April 2021
Taina Myllyharju museum director

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