Art Centre and Museum

Mikkeli Centre of Photography is an art centre and museum, specializing in art photography. Mikkeli Centre of Photography was established in 1989, being one of the oldest centres of photography in Finland. The centre houses five separate gallery spaces: Hall, Galleries I, II, III and Lounge Gallery. The centre is located in a beautiful heritage building at the university campus of Mikkeli, a short walk from the market square.

In these galleries there are changing exhibitions showing contemporary Finnish photography, and in Gallery III photographs of the local cultural history and heritage. There is also a small, high quality library of photographic books for the audience in the Lounge as well as an Information Service Desk.

The Centre promotes photography and visual arts on regional, national and international level. The Centre organises high quality art exhibitions, conducts photography, art and media education, is an expert in publishing photography books and houses a Digital Photography Workshop and visual design workshop space Kultura for artists' work, education and research. We work in cooperation with the Cultural Services of Mikkeli City and Arts Promotion Centre Finland. The Centre is also a member of Finnish Museums Association.

Welcome to visit

Mikkeli Centre of Photography
Puistokatu 3
50100 Mikkeli, Finland
Tel. +358 45 1494866

Next exhibition: Our Climate 19.11.-19.12.2020

We are building our next exhibition, Our Climate, which will feature art works from Tiina Itkonen, Mitro Kontturi, Tuula Närhinen, Perttu Saksa and Pekka Turunen. The exhibition will open on Thursday, 19.11.2020.

Tiina Itkonen: Iceberg Gallery 2, 2006

Tiina Itkonen
Melting Away

The climate in the Arctic is warming more strongly than the global average, and temperatures are rising there twice as fast as in other regions. The permanent ice cover of the sea has been disappearing for a couple of decades. Melting threatens the entire Arctic environment and affects climate and ecosystems across the globe.

Itkonen’s images relate to several series shot in Greenland between 2002 and 2010.

Tiina Itkonen (b. 1968, Helsinki) has taken photographs of Greenland for more than 25 years. She has travelled more than 1,500 kilometers along the west coast of Greenland in a dog sled, open boat, sailboat, helicopter, small plane, cargo ship and an oil tanker. Itkonen has photographed the life of the Inughuits as the most northern people in the world, icebergs and panoramic landscapes. Itkonen is currently photographing the effects of climate change on the lives of indigenous peoples together with an American researcher.

Itkonen's artworks have been displayed in numerous exhibitions in Finland and abroad. The photo book Inughuit was published in 2004 and Avannaa, a photo book of Greenlandic landscapes, was published in 2015.

Mitro Kontturi: Luminaire from the Romulus series, 2017

Mitro Kontturi

Romulus is the common name for luminaires made of scrap metal. Mitro Kontturi has made about 70 pieces since 2017.

Mitro Kontturi (b. 1963, Helsinki) is an artist photographer who graduated with a master's degree from the Academy of Fine Arts of Helsinki in 2003. The production of Kontturi is mainly photographs. He lives and works in Mikkeli.

Tuula Närhinen: Baltic Sea Plastique, 2013

Tuula Närhinen
Baltic Sea Plastique

Baltic Sea Plastique includes nine "marine organisms" made up of plastic waste dumped on the shores.

The work also includes short video clips in which plastic organisms are seen swimming in front of Helsinki in the coastal waters of Harakka Island. In the sea, they make contact with algae, fry and water currents. A plastic bag jellyfish flatters its transparent bathing bell, a pink seahorse dances to the beat of the waves, and a stingray shaped from a plastic tube flatters its lazy blue fins.

The synthetic material adapts to its environment in an awful way: plastic literally works like a fish in water.

Tuula Närhinen
(b. 1967, Helsinki) is a multidisciplinary visual artist who has raised ecological issues in her production.

Närhinen's installations are connected to nature and natural phenomena such as wind, rain and frost or the environmental problems of the marine nature. At the heart of the artworks is the process of filming: the artist, nature and the means of filming work together and transform natural phenomena into visible traces. Often nature itself takes on the role of an artist: trees draw or the sea writes.

Närhinen graduated with a doctorate in Fine Arts from the Academy of Fine Arts of Helsinki and she has a degree in architecture from the Helsinki University of Technology.

Perttu Saksa: Map of Essence from the Dark Atlas series, 2018

Perttu Saksa
Dark Atlas

My artworks reflect our relationship to energy and its significance to people. The artworks are the result of several years of work, during which I made long trips of filming in the regions of Benin and Togo. I was interested in roadside gas stations selling low-quality gasoline distilled from stolen oil from multinational companies, a kind of a pirated product.

I was interested in the concreteness of the topic. Not so much the gasoline trade in West Africa, but oil and energy as a structural part of society and its localization as a physical element at the human level.

I lighted up the gas canisters and let the light sift through the mud shell covering the canisters and the dregs of gasoline. The translucent gasoline containers resembled the illuminated globe, familiar from childhood. I remember running my finger along distant shorelines, without a perception of the unfamiliar places or their inhabitants. I named the pictures as maps - Maps of Essence. (Gasoline is essence in French.)

Perttu Saksa (b. 1977) is an award-winning photographic and video artist. His artworks have been exhibited in numerous galleries and museums across Europe. His artworks can be found in several public collections. Currently Saksa’s artworks are on display in a solo exhibition at the Helsinki Art Museum, and he is creating a book of the artworks in the Essence series, which will be published in 2021 by the German art publisher Kehrer.

Pekka Turunen: Kaliningrad from When The War Is Over series, 2009

Pekka Turunen
When The War Is Over

Pekka Turunen’s photographs study the military bases of the former Soviet Union in the vicinity of the Baltic Sea and the new life that has been born on their outskirts.

The artworks transport through the atmosphere of the Cold War, highlighting the signs of fear and violence that prevailed at the time. For the photographer, dilapidated, nature-occupied military bases are like an ancient destroyed civilization whose future is still uncertain.

Are these places also metaphors for the societies of today that need to be completely thought through and rebuilt?

Pekka Turunen (b. 1958, Joensuu) is a photographer from Kemiönsaari who has graduated from the Helsinki University of Art and Design. His artworks have been seen in numerous solo and group exhibitions in Finland and abroad. Turunen's artworks are characterized by the representation of the Finnish way of life and the state of the environment.

Latest exhibitions 14.10.-7.11.2020

Kaisu Häkkänen

Kaisu Häkkänen: From the Series Backwoods, 2018.

Päivi-Maria Jaatinen
The Touch of the Luminous Night and Other Garden Photographs

Päivi-Maria Jaatinen: Self-Portrait in the Garden, 2020

Olli Jaatinen
Selected Pictures I – Childhood

Olli Jaatinen: Ahti, 1969

Historical Mikkeli Collection
Erkki Kakkonen's photographs

Historical Mikkeli Collection: Erkki Kakkonen