Page 29 - Matti Kalkamo / RAW
P. 29

Besides, Muodonmuutos – aineenvaihdunta (Metamorphosis – Metabolism) already crystallizes much about one of the cornerstones of Kalkamo’s art in its title. Substances transform, forms change.
Even religious mysteries are not a foreign area for Kalkamo’s art. How Low/High Can You Go? in the office building of the Lutheran parishes in Tampere is a ladder made out of people’s linked arms that is slightly shaky but looks strong enough for support. An old, common symbol is linked in a somewhat magical spirit to the symbol of the union of the intimate and human – hands. Religion, too, is a community of people, a common agreement, a “concept”. The ladder leads to the otherworld, up or down. It leads elsewhere. The same tormenting longing and hope that there must be something else, something better, is what combines religion and rock music, perhaps even all of Kalkamo’s visual art, into the same trinity.
The final sculpture
It is possible to fight evil, to long for something better, to try to find a sensible and tolerable way to live, but finally, everything will end. Humour does not really eliminate death, but it may make it easier to face. Many, if not all of Kalkamo’s works deal with the boundary between life and death, from one side or the other.
There is something that can help keep us alive, however. The boy who jumped up and down on the couch, playing air guitar and raving and screaming to the music, is still jumping up and down in Kalkamo’s art, and with its assistance, in us as well; the one who was flummoxed by the fact that something so wonderful exists as music or art, that it is simultaneously beautiful and funny, but also terribly and absolutely true. That is why we never want to fall inside this grinder quite fully. It is a reminder that it is possible to build another, truer way of existing than this crushing platitude.
That another way is what we try to discover all our lives. And then it is time to go.
Pessi Rautio

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