by Harri Kalha
Mythology Then and Now
Reflections on ”Finnishness” and Design Excellence in the Post-War Era.
Wednesday 10th of May from 16.30 to 18.00
Art historian, author Harri Kalha was the first, in his Ph.D. thesis from 1997, to address the (post-structuralist, Barthesian) concept of mythology vis a vis Finnish design history. Kalha’s point back then was to look at discourses on Finnishness in and around the idea of a ”Golden Age” of Finnish applied arts. How was the myth constructed, and in what sense was it a myth? The move from ”reception aesthetics” to discourse analysis was a crucial step, yet it had little if any effect on design rhetorics, and hardly any on the study of design history. Where have we gotten since then — are we still in the thralls of an ”asymmetrical mermaid”?
Harri Kalha’s talk is moderated by NÆS- Nomad Agency/Archive of Emergent Studies. This event is part of the forum program for the exhibition Every Straight Line Bends by its Own Weight, at the Changing Room of the recently opened permanent collection exhibition Utopia Now.