Eija-Liisa Ahtila
Fishermen (Études no 1)

21 October - 27 November 2010

Michael Stevenson is pleased to present a short film by the renowned Finnish artist Eija-Liisa Ahtila as part of the FOREX series.

Fishermen is the first in a series of five studies which the artist has called 'Études'. The term refers to a short composition for a solo instrument, intended as an exercise but with sufficient artistic merit to make it suitable for performance. Shot on a beach in West Africa, the piece observes local fishermen who attempt to overcome strong wind and heavy waves to launch their boats out to sea. The waves repeatedly capsize their boats and scatter their fishing equipment over the water. A modest piece in comparison to the complex multi-screen narratives for which Ahtila is best known, Fishermen is no less visually and emotionally compelling in its portrayal of the protagonists' travails.

Born in 1959 in Hameenlinna, Finland, Ahtila lives and works in Helsinki. She studied film in Los Angeles and London. She has exhibited extensively at numerous museums and film festivals around the world, and has received significant prizes including the Artes Mundi Award in 2006 and the Vincent Van Gogh Biennial Award for Contemporary Art in Europe in 2000. Solo exhibitions have taken place at venues including Tate Modern, London; Jeu de Paume, Paris; K21 Düsseldorf; Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art, Helsinki; Neue Nationalgalerie, Berlin; Museum Fridericianum, Kassel; and the Museum of Modern Art, New York. Important group exhibitions include Becoming Animal, Becoming Human, Neue Gesellschaft für bildende Kunst (NGBK), Berlin (2008); Ecstasy: In and About Altered States, Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (2006); The World is a Stage: Stories Behind Pictures, Mori Art Museum, Tokyo (2006); the 51st Venice Biennale (2005); and Documenta 11, Kassel, Germany (2002).

For more information about the FOREX project series, click here.

Ahtila exhibits concurrently with Jo Ractliffe and Simon Gush. The exhibitions open on Thursday 21 October, 6-8pm. The gallery is open from Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm, and Saturday 10am to 1pm.

Courtesy of Marian Goodman Gallery, New York and Paris.