In his images, Finnish photographer Janne Lehtinen captures the individual and human aspiration of continuously wanting to push one's boundaries. "Sacred Bird" showcases various flight contraptions designed by the author himself.
The images convey a sense of creative freedom and possess a subtle humour; even so, the photographic sequences may appear strange, occasionally absurd. For all their poetic winsomeness, the contraptions seem anachronistic and fragile and will never fulfil the dream of taking to the skies?
The fanciful setting is further accentuated by its insertion into a vast, sober and realistic environment, namely that of the Nordic landscape, which unequivocally evokes the history of art and the tradition of 18th-century Romantic painting. The scenery thus lends a new dimension to the work. The portrayal of the solitary man facing the isolation and emptiness of a monumental and infinite landscape evokes foremost a sense of despair, before thoughts return to its author, ultimately reinforcing him in his existence and individuality.
It is thus not failure that feeds the cliché of the ill-fated artist (man), but rather his passivity. Unlived dreams fade from memory, while ideas that have been realised are transmitted into images and stories.
English translation by Claire Weyland.
Many thanks to Gallery Taik Persons for its help.