Experiments on a new project: to integrate porcelain in to woven fabric and to create a garment that sounds.
I’we always been keen on juxtaposition and using material to emphasize it. I also love books and tales.
The first key that I made (2006) was a safety lock key to my Helsinki home. This simple ceramic key has been shown in some amazing places from Fashion week in Milan and Paris, as a part of Laitinen collection (2008) to a collaboration with Rebecca Clamp as a part of her beautiful album “Key to the City” (2011). It’s also been carried by my loved ones usually when they have left Helsinki to adventure the world.
The next key I made (2008) I found from a flea market in Paris. I believe it was the key to beauty, to rooms with slight cigarette smoke and Art Nouveau. The Paris keys I kept to myself…
The third key I made this summer, it doesn’t belong to any specific city. It’s a key to a closet door or maybe to an old gate. Id like to think it’s the key to Narnia or to the Secret Garden?
From left to right: Helsinki, Paris and Secret Garden / 2006-2016 / material: ceramics
Experimental textiles in the making (2015–)
It’s been a long time since millenium when I graduated as an interior textile Artisan from Vihti School of Arts and Crafts (now called LUKSIA). In Vihti traditions of weaving fabrics was taught by amazingly skillful teachers who shared their wisdom and knowledge for us students. We became craftsmen. Now, fifteen years later I feel grateful for the skills I got to learn about traditional weaving. With this knowledge I now have tools to explore and express myself by weaving – for example a plumage made of Black Grouse and Capercaillie feathers.
Smaragdus is a term we use with my bästis Holgersson for togetherness, fun and fearless actions and joy of being. In March it turns into something green at LOKAL gallery in Helsinki!
Kulju’s plumage (weaved feathers) and Holgersson’s prints (paths and gateways in the green) are going to be a part of Smaragdus group exhibition opening in the beginning of March 2016 at LOKAL gallery.
Detail of “True Colors”
photo: Veera Kulju
“Sammaltyttö” sculpture by Kim Simonsson, “Pastoral Passage” art photographs by Onerva Utriainen and “True Colours” art textile by Veera Kulju.
photo: Vanessa Forsten
Ukly Truth of the Learning Process (2015)
Sitting behind the potter’s wheel with practically no skills led me to humility. Freedom lied in understanding that I don’t need to know how to reach perfection. Happiness came from forming objects without criticism. The rational symmetrical turning of the wheel felt comfortable. The clay was like a firm but slack friend. After a while I learned that the way to succeed was to get centered. I also learned that things got a hole lot more interesting if the centering was a bit off. My truth is that you learn by doing without fear. The trick is to find your center and then learn how to bend it.
photo: Sanna Käsmä
THE ABSOLUT BEGINNER COLLECTION pt. II
Random turning wheel experiences during summer 2016
Art work (2013) from Toinen Kattaus exhibition for LOKAL: Thread from a found collection constructed underneath an old table cover. (In private collection)
photo: Katja Hagelstam
Series of Popcorn Bowls (2006 – 2014): a study of porcelain and experimental material use. I made the first Popcorn bowls while still studying. The ceramic studio at Arabia occasionally filled with the smell of popcorn as I used the common kitchen’s microwave to pop up my material. I heard afterwards from other students that they thought I had gone mad – making real popcorn transformed into porcelain.
photos: Chikako Harada
photos: Fabian Björk
Masters of Arts exhibition 2011: Thesis work for Aalto University, department of Applied Art and Design. Shadows & Threads’ is above all a never ending process, which creates continual or unwinding spaces. It is a series of sculptures, constructed of forgotten threads and lampshades. Objects are frozen in the moment of observation, they are evidence of the comfort to be found in repetition. The literary part of this work is a series of letters written and sent to people who have had an important role in my work.This work is an end and a beginning – thus it is also a reminder of the fact that everything is connected. Clarity and chaos – reason and feeling.
photo: Veera Kulju
film and photo: Fabian Björk
Kulju ❤ Mander
Nowadays making decisions is tricky. There’s never enough time and things just seem to linger. The Decider is a candle holder, which introduces destiny to the game and will decide for you. Switch off the lights, light the candles and wait. The flickering flames slow down the pace. In the end, your answer is lit. “Yes” or “No”
photo: Paavo Martikainen