03 September 2016 - 08 October 2016

Osmo Rauhala

Roger Katwijk is pleased to announce the upcoming exhibition of Osmo Rauhalla, one of the pioneers of the current international movement in Finnish contemporary art. The last time his work was shown in The Netherlands was in 2007 when he had his solo exhibition ‘Before the horizon was broken’ in the Groninger Museum. Osmo Rauhala uses art to explore our ability to understand the reality of life. For that purpose he uses philosophical, theoretical and scientific ideas that are based on direct observations of the nature around him. In his paintings Rauhala complements animal and plant symbolism with a pure world of abstract signs, pointing to the way we conceptualise and organise the things we see. This reality is highly based on a genetic code (DNA), which is the result of a massive revolutionary process. In this respect Rauhala sees an important role for art. Art can be used through creating better symbols; by using these symbols we are learning the nature of communication and have better understanding about the reality around us. 

Even though modern science has shown strong results in solving our problems and answering our questions, we have witnessed new threats to our well-being. According to Rauhala we don't know how much more heat the atmosphere can take and how much more pollution the seas can absorb. And then there is our DNA, which is the result of a massive revolutionary process that is capable of reproducing and transmitting its genetic information to the next generation. It is a magnificent system, but we just don't know how this process involving billions of possible variations really works. This game has not yet proven theory. And when you don't know all the rules you cannot play in todays' world without facing enormous risks. We therefore need to be careful with things like chemicals, radiation and gene-manipulation. So we must try to understand the rules of the game that nature plays with us. As long as we do not know enough about it, just keep our hands off.

Osmo Rauhala (1957)
Osmo Rauhala went through the Academy of Fine Arts, Helsinki, the School of Visual Arts, Graduate Program (M.F.A.) New York and the New York University, School of Education.
In late 1980´s he moved to New York and made his Master Degree in art over there in 1990. The same year he made his first soloshow in NY and has been in a gallery in NYC since that. He has had over 50 solo-exhibitions including 15 one-man museum shows in Europe, North-and South America, and other musea, amongst others: Groninger Museum (Netherlands), Modern Art Museum MAM (Rio De Janeiro), Museum of Contemporary Art  KIASMA National Gallery Finland, Millesgarden Art Museum Stockholm, Chelsea Art Museum NY,  Stadtmuseum Ratingen (Germany), Helsinki City Art Museum HAM, Lillehammer Art Museum (Norway). Works of Osmo Rauhala can be found in museum collections as well as many important corporate collections , such as in the Netherlands, Akzo Nobel and the Bouwfonds Nederlandse Gemeenten.

In addition to pursuing an international career in art, Rauhala continues to run his farm in Finland, specialising on organic production. He feels it necessary to carry on the genetic memory he has for the place. His family has lived there for centuries. After working in his studio in New York Rauhala returns to Finland every spring for planting season.