Pictures of The Month/ Tarja Trygg:Solargraphs from the series: 8 seasons in Utsjoki

05.02.2018 - 04.03.2018

The eight seasons in Finland is a rarity overseas. It would be interesting to see how it is possible to capture the arcs f the sun in the landscapes of Utsjoki during a year with using solargraphy technique.

The Northern light, the midnight sun adds it’s own exoticness into the North. On the summer there’s too much light and the opposite of that lightness, the dark season called Polar night that begins in Utsjoki 26th of November, is a period when the sun does not cross the horizon at all. The next time when the sun rises is January 16th.

Photographing solargraphs with a pinhole camera is a slow process, because the exposure lengths can be weeks or even a month. A new arc left by the sun is saved on a black and white photography paper day by day as a negative picture, and is then turned in to a positive one in a photo editor program after scanning.

There are solargraphs from the series Eight Seasons in Utsjoki 2016-2017 in the exhibition. Together with the solargraphs there is a film showing the changes in the landscape during a year. At the same time it shows how the pinhole cameras have been placed in the terrain. Viewer can compare solargraphs with the photographs taken from the same landscape.

In the North people are used to Northern light shows during night time, but a 100 kg meteor rocketing down to the atmosphere on a Thursday evening 16.11.2017 was a rare event. The ball of fire had smashed and flamed out about 20-30km of height according to Ursa’s calculations. Could some traces from this phenomenon be saved also on a solargraph?

In the exhibition there are also solargraphs where arcs of sun in the landscapes of Utsjoki can be seen exactly that time when the meteor was dashing into the atmosphere and burning away. This phenomenon lasted for 9,5 seconds and lit the landscapes in the North. T. Länsman says about three solargraphs that they really are like photographed with a flash light, which means it is likely they have been lit with the meteor. On the left side sky of the picture there is also a straight ray of light. There can be different interpretations, but it is interesting that these traces have appeared exactly during this event.

In the sonic landscape of the film there is a Sami yoik by Hilda Länsman performed by Mikko Heikinpoika – Polar Light Featuring. There are photographs by Tarja A Länsman and solargraphs by Tarja Trygg of the film. The film is produced by Loistotuotanto Oy, 2018.


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