October 07, 2003



Chris Lee and I were having a discussion yesterday at "rehearsal." It seems that our band, The Sands, has hit a roadblock: We must write songs and play them over and over so we do not make mistakes. The getting together and playing the songs over and over seems kinda old, because we're kinda old. So, like a perfect sneaker that never tastes the pavement, this could be a poster band that never plays, never delivers stupid between-song banter from the stage, never grows old, never makes a terrible seventh record. Just three perfect posters, stuck way up high on buildings to haunt Bloomberg in his sleep. I know all too well what happens when an actual band puts up actual posters. I don't want to go through that again. "What it is is illegal."

I got a package today from Finnish artist Outi Heiskanen, who I met in Finland earlier this year. She wears a small, conical white hat like a mid-level wizard and her hair is large and frizzy and white. (She ends her letter with a Xerox picture of her head, signed "Hi—it's me the baboon!") Her art is killer, a combination of dry-point, watercolor and various printing techniques. The content is like 60s children's books (Leo Lionni, Steig R.I.P., etc.) reclaiming their subconscious through Finnish mythology. (I know nothing about Finnish mythology, but she said the babies and old men are central to Finnish myth.) Her granddaughter Siiri Nordin was in a pop band called Killer, whose CD she included, along with twelve tiny yellow chicks (not real) in a plastic box.

Outi says she was part of the Finnish equivalent of Fluxus. I could not understand the name of the group, so I can't really corroborate this. She has a room dedicated to Buddhism in her house, which is dark and red and very soothing to a hand-wound New York headcase. Her contribution to the Night Train exhibit at the Kiasma in Helsinki is still up. Start the virtual exhibition ("full version"), and then click on the left-most yellowy-green room, which is roughly in the top center of the floor plan. (The title "Summer Night" will appear at left when you roll over Outi's installation.)

Posted by Sasha at October 7, 2003 11:33 AM | TrackBack