AV-arkki: Trees & Destruction

AV-arkki’s screening expands on our forest theme through experimental shorts.

The forest and depictions of it are an integral part of Finnish art – including media art. In the 1990s, Finnish video art was described as “rustic” and non-urban. However, artists did not venture into the thicket simply to escape the anxiety-inducing modern world. Instead, the forest and its depictions were intertwined with various artistic and sociocultural approaches and emotional registers.

Tytti Rantanen,
AV-arkki, the Centre for Finnish Media Art

Language: Fin, Eng Duration: 68 min Age Limit: 7+

  • Suomi-neito seisoo ruohoisella suolla vasara kädessään.


    The Maiden of Finland
    Director: Lea Kantonen, Pekka Kantonen
    Country: Finland
    Year: 1988
    Genre: Experimental, Documentary
    Duration: 12 min
    Age Limit:

    At a wilderness pond, a performer dressed as Maiden Finland threatens her temple with an ax, while she protects her head. A family does everyday chores in a wilderness where trees have been allowed to rot in peace. Shot in the Kessi wilderness area, which spawned a popular movement to protects its trees.

  • Filmikuva korkeasta mäntymetsästä, jossa yksi mänty on kaatunut vinottain kuvan poikki.


    A Forest
    Director: Minna Parkkinen
    Country: Finland
    Year: 2000
    Genre: Experimental, Documentary
    Duration: 3 min

    A documentary about the destruction of the childhood landscape.

  • Mustapukuinen hahmo istuu aurinkoisessa metsässä selin kuvaajaan.

    Rakas kuusi

    Dear Spruce
    Director: Annette Arlander
    Country: Finland
    Year: 2020
    Genre: Experimental
    Duration: 6 min

    This letter to a spruce was performed with a spruce in Mustarinda in northeastern Finland on 25 September 2020. The artist read the letter written to the spruce in Finnish, recorded it as a voice-over to the video, translated it and added English subtitles.

  • Hattupäinen halko katsoo säälimättä pientä räjähdystä edessään kirkkaana kesäpäivänä.

    Pölkyllä pää

    Log Head
    Director: Maarit Suomi-Väänänen
    Country: Finland, Canada, Norway
    Year: 2015
    Genre: Experimental
    Duration: 11 min
    Age Limit:

    Log Head is an experimental comedy about a birch log with a soul and a pair of skis. When old and useless, and ready to be chopped, Log Head takes off to its skis. Will Log Head’s escape be blocked?

  • Jakkupukuinen mies tanssii silmät kiinni metsä taustanaan.

    Feel the Heat

    Director: Pasi Autio
    Country: Finland
    Year: 2022
    Genre: Experimental
    Duration: 10 min
    Age Limit:

    Feel the Heat depicts a one-man disco in a forest at night, and the atmosphere is magnificent – the lights are flashing, birds are singing, dancing continues and time disappears. The night cannot go on forever and, in the morning, the surrounding reality is revealed.

  • Vääristynyt ja kulunut kuva, jossa näkyy korkealta kuusinen metsä ja vettä.


    A Nature Documentary
    Director: Joel Karppanen
    Country: Finland
    Year: 2021
    Genre: Experimental, Documentary
    Duration: 11 min
    Age Limit:

    An essay film about simulated nature, forest animals, nature photographers and national parks, that combines ecocriticism and image critique, archival and modern day footage, natural soundscape and electronic birds. 

  • Tummia läikkiä, naisia ja kovakuoriaisia

    Dark Blotches, Women and Beetles
    Director: Liisa Karvonen, Ulla Väätäinen
    Country: Finland
    Year: 1997
    Genre: Experimental
    Duration: 7 min

    Dark blotches, women and beetles draws its primitive strength from the forest’s spellbinding magic. It traces mysterious messages hidden in trees, on and underlying the surface of cliffs, in the patterns of lichen. Weird creatures travel in dark rivers following the borders of snow, water and ice.

  • Survival Guide for a Post-Apocalyptic Child (F)

    Director: Nastja Säde Rönkkö
    Country: Finland
    Year: 2023
    Genre: Experimental
    Duration: 7 min

    F is for forest, and in this forest I arrive alone. To know your plants is key in foraging and to address your hunger is key to survival in here. The film is part of Nastja Säde Rönkkö’s 26-part video series, based on the 26 letters of the alphabet.

  • Luminen metsä, jossa kaksi henkilö seisovat ja kaatavat isosta valkoisesta kassista sitruunoita maahan.

    Dump a Bushel of Lemons in a Northern Forest in Winter

    Kaada vakallinen sitruunoita pohjoiseen metsään talvella
    Director: Elina Brotherus
    Country: Finland
    Year: 2017
    Genre: Experimental
    Duration: 1 min

    After Geoffrey Hendricks, Dump a bushel of lemons in a Northern forest in winter, from Bici and Geoffrey Hendricks, The Friday Book of White Noise, 1963–1965.