Finnish artist expresses her feelings through blurred photos

‘Feeding The Birds II’, taken in Nepal in 2013. The price for this piece was RM850.

LIKE magnets to the eye – this is what the work of Finnish artist Paivi Maria Wells does to an audience.

Misty, dreamy and surreal, it’s easy to mistake them for paintings at first glance.

Until you find out they are actually photographs.

“In an age where people are obsessed with high definition images, this is refreshing,” opined Arif Jaafar, one of the artist’s guests at her first solo exhibition, at Aku Cafe and Gallery, Kuala Lumpur.

About 70% of Wells’ work was sold on the first day itself.

Guests invited for the opening likened the effect of the photographs’ motion blur to watercolour paintings.

The indistinct shapes draw you into a deep hazy labyrinth.

The flutter of wings in ‘Blue Birds’ create a dreamy effect. This photo was taken in Nepal in 2013.
Wells at her first solo exhibition in Malaysia.  

Though Wells’ images are clear enough for the eye to make out, especially in “Dancing” and “Little Monks”, one cannot help but continue to search the picture in hopes of discovering something hidden.

“It brings one very close and near to the subject,” said another guest, Marita Miikkulainen.

Now based in Kuala Lumpur, Wells, a mother of three, studied art and design at Southwest Finland Institute.

She learned photography while living in Nepal.

Photography has been her creative medium since 2012.

“All the work that you see is done with the camera on-the-spot. It’s not manipulated,” she said.

In addition to fine art photography paper, Wells’ works have also been printed on gossamer silk, organza, crepe de chine and merino wool.

“In Motion” will be held until May 18 at Aku Cafe and Gallery, 8, 1st Floor, Jalan Panggong, Kuala Lumpur.

Viewing times are from 11am to 8pm. Closed on Mondays. For details, call 03-2857 6887.

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