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At One with Nature

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A major survey of Arno Rafael Minkkinen’s oeuvre is on show at the Kunstfoyer in Munich until November 27, 2022.

Finnish-American photographer Arno Rafael Minkkinen (b. 1945 in Helsinki) has been capturing self-portraits of his nude body in natural surroundings for more than five decades. The resulting body of work – spanning from the early 1970s to the present day – is marked by a cohesive timelessness and signature aesthetic. Minkkinen’s images are a homage to the relationship between man and nature: it is as though the artist is seeking to embrace the world.

The methods used to create these bold shots pre-date the use of Photoshop by decades. Instead, Minkkinen relies on a simple 9-second shutter release, which allows him to quickly pose for each photograph. He usually works alone, and will not permit anyone to even look through the viewfinder of his camera. “Many of my photographs are difficult to orchestrate. Some can even be dangerous. I don’t want to put another person in harm’s way by making them take the risks I have to take – like leaning out over a cliff, or staying underwater for a prolonged period of time. Some of my pictures might look simple, but in reality they can test the limits of what a human body is capable of, or willing to risk. This is why I call them self-portraits, so the viewer knows who is in the picture, and who took it.”

The showcase in Munich – which comprises some 150 images, including numerous wall-sized prints – is the most comprehensive survey of the artist’s oeuvre to date. Created in collaboration with designer Yolanda Cuomo and curator Isabel Siben, it also marks the first time Minkkinen assumed a lead role in curating one of his own exhibitions.

For further information visit Kunstfoyer Versicherungskammer München and Arno Rafael Minkkinen

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