Sculptor Jiri Geller finds his subjects in popular culture and combines them with new themes. His works can be characterised as punk objects with their everlasting beauty.
Jiri Geller is interested in well-known, recognisable and visually tested images and symbols. Chosen figures, however, receive new roles in events that are coloured by unusual coincidences and comical encounters. At the same time, these frozen events momentarily hint at the transitory nature of everything.
An important feature of Geller’s art is US-derived customisation, which he applies in his unique way. Geller customises the familiar, recognisable popular visual catalogue and, based on it, makes new objects and images. By varying these elements, he dramatises new situations and encounters.
Jiri Geller’s new subjects of interest are smileys and astronauts. Smileys he sees even as a new global form of folk art. Space, on the other hand, has been part of Geller’s catalogue from the very beginning. It is a spiritual space of escape or a possible alternative to this planet and its growing problems. The exhibition’s title work FUCK THE WORLD! shows a natural-size astronaut waving his hand in greeting, but who leaves the viewer wondering whether it is about entering or exiting.
Rock music, related attitudes and philosophy are subjects that interest Geller. As a performer of rock music himself, he is deeply familiar with the comic strips, graphic art and underground publications associated with it.
“He experiences something of the immediacy and seductiveness of rock music in neon colours, which he has been using in recent years. According to Geller, neon colours create a distinctive, anarchist state of mind and make the works look better than reality,” explains the curator of the exhibition, Maaretta Jaukkuri.
Geller is a silversmith by education, but he combines in his works both craftsmanship and digital techniques and production methods. Central to Geller’s art is making objects so beautiful that they, in his own words, produce “a moment of bliss that lasts for ever”.
Geller was one of the founder members of the ROR (Revolutions on Request) group of artists, and he belonged to the group from 1997 to 2008. The group brought a whole new kind of energy and edge into the field of art in Finland, and they also exhibited internationally, for example at Manifesta in Frankfurt am Main 2002, the Venice Biennale 2003 and the Mori Art Museum in Tokyo 2005.