Version 1: she

Virpi Leinonen has degrees in design and in social sciences. She has worked as a journalist. The artist career began in the 1990s: photographs, paintings, (watercolour, gouache, ink), drawings, installations. Nature is the common denominator in her art: biological nature, nature as a cultural construction, environment as a combination of the two, and human nature. Virpi Leinonen has developed methods to use nature processes in her work, and there have been environmental themes in her exhibitions. Many of her exhibitions have been special projects, like Aikakuosi, where the new millennium was approached through the future-oriented sixties.
Because there is no photomanipulation in her photographs, they document moments of intensive seeing. Virpi Leinonen is interested in conceptual art, in phenomena like time, perception, imagery, meaning. Colour, light and composition are important,also when she makes photography and painting interact.


Version 2: I

My childhood home had a different milieu and landscape towards the south, the east, the north, and the west. Is that why I have been interested in so many things? But it was the artist in me, who took me through the years of severe allergies and sensitivities. My life was filled with uncertainty, but I was certain about my art. While everything was difficult, I felt happy when I worked. Because I could not use paints and papers in of doors, I worked out of doors in wintertime, and found new working methods. In that dead end of circumstances I painted a door and stepped out. I thank the clouds, the rains, the snow, the ice and the water in the lakes for their collaboration.

Life has a spiral form: we meet something again, but on a different level. Many ideas arise from childhood experiences. I remembered how I saw sparkling light deep in the clear water. How ice was a prism full of colours. How those puddles mirroring the sky were doors to other worlds. How I could change the scale, see mountains in the sand. How my microscope revealed new forms and structures. How we stood under the street lamp when it snowed, and imagined we were travelling among the stars. As an artist I could again learn to wonder. I called it poet´s science.


Version 3: we

Artists have traditionally been placed in the cultural counternarrative of romanticism. Everyone who realizes her/his artist potential, must still place oneself in relation to the cultural dichotomy. I did. I was fourteen and I wrote. Does the artist life begin from the moment one becomes aware of one´s quality? There is a paradox: one needs to stay an outsider, and yet art is all about connection and contact. The artist has to connect the right-brain and the left-brain thinking styles, and the conscious and the nonconscious levels. Then there will be a dialogue between the artist and the work of art, and when that work is accomplished, the dialogue continues between it and those who look at it.

When I hear that my art has a beneficial effect, I know I have done something right. I´d rather bring harmony than conflict, rather unite than separate. There have been crucial moments in my life, when I have understood that I want to be in this world because of its beauty. Whatever that beauty is – perhaps something invisible which can be seen only in the visible.