basic info : works

01 Bypass Surgery
02 Second Skin
03 Bearded Virgin
04 Insect Collection
05 Dialogue
06 Fertilization
07 Borderlne
08 Reformatory
09 Bodyspace
10 Dialectics of the Surface
11 Contacts and Kaski
12 Pyromania
13 Anti-dualistic Dualism
14 Neon-forest
15 various works

<< prev next >>
FERTILIZATION, 2003. Wasp nest material on acrylic ball, Ø 100 cm. Public artwork, Environment Office of Oulu, Finland.



Fertilization is a roundish wasps' nest, installed in the corner of a dimly lit stairway, onto the ceiling. The wasps usually build a nest under the eaves or to the attic, so the location of the 'nest work' up on the corner is well justified. The diameter of the nest is one meter, and I have made it by coating a ball-shaped form with the paper-like surface of wasps' nests. I have used the common wasp's (Vespula vulgaris) nests, visually full of variety and subtle nuances. The material is taken from about a hundred different nests, which results in an exceptionally richness of tones.

Constructions built by animals usually look beautiful to the human eye, but aesthetics is an issue solely related to the human mind. The real beauty of these constructions lies in their unity with the animals' life and their dynamic yet balanced relation with the environment. The wasps collect building material for a nest from their surroundings by gnawing wooden surfaces. This way, the diverse colors of these surfaces are transferred to the range of colors of the nest. By its lines that resemble a drawing, the wasps' nest literally takes in the color tones of its environment.

A work of art that imitates an enormous wasps' nest (or, in fact, is exactly that), may raise the question of what it represents in a public building, besides its aesthetic harmony. The work implies a provocative attitude, a sense of anarchy and danger, strengthened by the bright green emergency exit sign, which is partly located on the same wall as the stairway. In Finland, the fatalities by animal attacks are usually caused by wasps or bees, so they can quite reasonably be considered the 'most dangerous animals.' One may thus experience the work as a symbolic threat. In the spring, the wasp queen, having wintered alone, starts to build a new nest, raises for its assistance new offspring and creates a ball-shaped cover round the nest. The wasps' nest can be interpreted a core symbol of the reproduction organism, not only in the clinical but also sexual sense, full of surprises and stings, emotional danger, even the fear of death or life.

(c)Timo Heino