Ilona Niemi

s. 1975, Piikkiö
Visual Artist
Residence: Salo

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Artist’s Statement

Thematically, I am interested in the construction of femininity, and my works often hover on the borderline between childhood and adulthood. The disappearance of a childhood friend as a young girl in 1988 gives my works psychological tension.

Aside from painting, cutting and pasting are my core methods, emphasising the importance of destruction in the creation of something new. I also gain a lot from literature, and T. S. Eliot’s The Waste Land (1922) has enriched my work for years.
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Current information

Taidemaalariliiton Teosvälitys 2019 Kaapelitehtaalla


Ilona Niemi (Finland, 1975) trained as an artist in Scotland and the US, graduating with an MFA from SIUC in 2007. Her primary technique is oil painting, and she is especially interested in faces. She also makes collages, draws and takes photographs.

Niemi's works have been exhibited widely in the US and Europe, such as in the BP Portrait Award in the National Portrait Gallery in London, and the Gescheidle Gallery in Chicago. Niemi’s art has won various awards such as the Royal Scottish Academy’s Painting Prize. In 2014 she had a solo show at Salo Art Museum, accompanied by a publication funded by Arts Promotion Centre Finland.