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Artists' Association MUU » Hanna Nauska – HANAIS NUN PRESENTS: PURIFIXION
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MUU Galleria
Open: Tue-Fri 12-5pm, Sat-Sun 12-4pm
Lönnrotinkatu 33, 00180 Helsinki

Hanna Nauska, Angel in the Cellar. Photo: Ninni Wager.

Hanna Nauska: Angel in the Cellar (Photo: Ninni Wager)

Hanna Nauska’s exhibition poses a daring perspective to the art world: “Have you been subjected to abuse? Have you yourself abused someone?”


In June, MUU Gallery presents a rare exhibition – Hanna Nauska speaks, as the first artist in Finland, powerfully about her own experience as a victim of sexual abuse. The purpose of the exhibition is to undermine the taboo around the issue and to encourage more victims to report abuse. Victims often become isolated by their sense of shame. The old motto “personal is political” is ever more vital in today’s world: Nauska assembled a talented crew of video professionals and musicians and directed a musical film about her story in which she participates in all aspects of the film.

Another theme in the show is self-destructiveness under the rubric “Serial Suicide”. One manifestation of self-destructiveness are eating disorders: according to Nauska, contemporary society educates us to “behave like Nazis towards our own bodies”. If we let the media decide, no one is will ever be beautiful, good or slim enough for herself.

The exhibition consists of performances as well as artworks in other media, such as a video entitled Hanais Nun Projects presents: Out of the Box; a pop art piece called Art Gambling Machine; The Smallest Gallery in the World; Elisabeth’s Changing Body; and surrealist drawings and paintings. Nooa Katajala’s documentary photographs of the project will be on show at MUU Studio. Most of the works are beautiful, idyllic, and there is a lot of humour. The exhibition seeks to smash the myth of the “rape victim”: a victim of abuse can be anyone, a person who can fall in love and experience the whole spectrum of emotions.

The exhibition will live and evolve: There will be performances twice a week, and at the end of the show the inside of the Art Gambling Machine will be opened to the viewers who can assume the hero’s place. A happening under the theme Out of Isolation will seek to discover a position of equality through pictures: the artist will invite asylum seekers as guests and by drawing will explore with them the question: Are emotions universal despite their cultural contextuality?

Hanna Nauska was born in Kirkkonummi, Finland, in 1978. She works in Helsinki. Her practice includes all artistic media. She is also the vocalist and songwriter in the project Hanais Nun. In all her works, Nauska aims at specificity as well as multiple perspectives. She questions the old adage “less is more”, she challenges laziness and the acquiescence to easy aesthetics. Her motto is “But More is sublime”. She is always on the lookout for new things, and wants to “reincarnate in my new works”. Through her practice she has been able to heal her trauma, and she cannot thank her collaborators enough. During the collective Purifixion project, she found herself cleansed of the past experience to the extent that she is no longer afraid of certain places and is no longer anxious when she goes out at night.

The performances presented during the exhibition are:
On the opening night, 2 June, at 17.30, on 6 June at 15.00, and on 9 June at 15.00: Purifixion
On 13 June from 13.30–17.00 and on 16 June from 13.30–17.00: Be a hero in the Art Gambling Machine and earn your daily dose!
On 20 June from 13.00–17.00: (finally) Out of Isolation happening