Kristian Kaarna is a European photographer born in Finland. He feels at home all over the world. Kristian Kaarna has studied, lived and worked in international capitals throughout his adult life (Paris, Milan, Helsinki, Madrid, Barcelona, Brussels, Hong Kong). Today, he spends lot of his time in rural Spain, taking advantage of the remote work opportunities of modern technology and photographing Andalusian countryside.
"Photography is finding beauty in everyday life. It is to get to know the subject. It is detail in a natural wonder of the world or person in front of the camera. Photography is the art of observation. It is all about finding something interesting in nature or in human faces.
I have found that photography has only a little to do with the reality we see. It has everything to do with the way I see people or the world. Beauty can be seen in all things. It is seeing and composing that separates the snapshot from the photograph. I am observing all the time interesting moments and I want to catch the magic on film before the instant passes.
I enjoy shooting film or sometimes digital, depending on the photograph’s purpose. I use digital photography to create a diary of the things I see but most of all I like working with film. I love analogue photography because it allows me to capture meaningful moments. With this traditional method, I have the power to control the wholeprocess from beginning to end. I like to select the film, find the way of working, have a clear thought beforehand, observe the light and finally create the magic in the darkroom."
Since a child Kristian Kaarna dreamed of living abroad. In 1989 he left Finland for Paris to study French language and culture. He was impressed and fascinated by dynamism, culture, diversity and city lifestyle of Parisians. He felt right at home in this big wondrous city. New circle of friends introduced him to museums, galleries, cafes, restaurants, shops and night life. By the beautiful French language and music, the new world was opened for the young man.
In 1993 Kristian Kaarna started his journey of the photography. He went to study to the classical photography school MJM in Paris where he learned analogue black and white film photography and darkroom laboratory work. The magic of film photography and laboratory work took over him! After that he continued to study modern techniques in Paris, SPEOS in the most advanced photography school. He was one of the first photographers studying digital processes that changed the whole world.
Since 2011 Kristian Kaarna has exhibited his landscape photographs in numerous galleries and museums all over the Europe, including Nelimarkka Museum and TR1 Modern Art Museum. He has also participated numerous EU programs. In 2017 the Finland’s Prime Minister's Office joined the Kristian Kaarna's "Under the Blue Sky" project for the 2017 Centennial Year of Independence of Finland.
In the commercial world, he has worked in fashion industry with top models Carolina Bittencourt, Bimba Bosé, Nastasia Urbano, Barbara Guillame, Jean-Batiste just to name few.
Now he lives and works in Axarquía next to soaring mountain peaks in Andalucía in southern Spain. There he has own photography studio and black & white laboratory and inspiring landscape to make new beautiful images. Photography is a lifelong passion for Kristian Kaarna and this is reflected in the images he produces.
Kristian Kaarna loves shooting portraits. He thinks that capturing a perfect photo is not merely recording someone's features.
It is showing and telling the story of the subject, offering a vivid sense of a person's real presence. His aim is to capture the deep and genuine personality of each individual.
ONGOING AND PAST EXHIBITIONS
Kristian Kaarna has a passion for
landcape photography. He observes his constantly and acutely. For him, landscape photography is capturing the image that embodies the spirit of the outdoors.
It carries a sense of being there to see something incredible, small or huge. Making timeless landscape photography is his goal.
FILM PHOTOGRAPHY &
STUDIO AND DARKROOM
The magical art and science of the darkroom
"In this era of Photoshop and instant digital imaging, it may seem futile to shoot with film or to spend hours in the darkroom printing test strips and adjusting settings to find the right exposure, contrast and colour balance for a single photograph."
But it is magical and the time is well spent! In the darkroom I create extraordinarily complex and beautiful black and white photographs that are timeless."
Integrated Landscapes presents works by photographer Kristian Kaarna. His exhibition aims to stimulate discussion about the beauty of our own area, nature and its observation and contemplation in the bustle of everyday life.
"Beauty is found in our everyday environment. Sometimes it's hard to see the wonderful nature in places that we know so well. Familiarity can make the landscape boring, but we don't pay enough attention to it."
PROJECT LA RUCHE
Kristian Kaarna photographed a Parisian artist's residence La Ruche where many famous artists had once worked. The artist’s residence, once the cradle of modernism, is now closed to outsiders, but Kristian Kaarna was invited to stay and work there.
During his visit, Kristian photographed some current inhabitants of the house, known as the Beehive, and the statues found in the park, as well as the shattered splendour of La Ruche. The photographs of La Ruche were part of the Kristian Kaarna’s Nelimarkka Museum Solo photography exhibition.
THE PRIME MINISTER'S OFFICE JOINED KRISTIAN KAARNA'S PROJECT FOR THE 2017 CENTENNIAL YEAR OF INDEPENDENCE OF FINLAND
Kristian Kaarna's solo exhibition "Under the blue sky" met the conditions set by Finland 100/ Suomi 100 program, as part of the country’s centenary celebrations around the world.
The exhibition was on display at Frame Gallery in Fuengirola from 25 September 2017 to 25 September 2018 and at the Embassy of Finland in Brussels in spring 2018. The Finns achieved independence on 6 December 1917.
ART HOUSE PROJECT IN AXARQUIA
This project was created to have space where everyday life and art meet, and where indoor interacts with outdoor. It is a place to create images and use traditional techniques with the latest technologies. Here, people can create and learn black and white analogue film photography, use the darkroom and the studio. The project also helps people to make photography in magnificent surroundings.
The project embraces the past and looks to the future. Art house is a meeting place for art and culture-loving people from all over the world. Sustainable living in a modern world in the countryside!
Building exchibition in Nelimarkka Museum in Finland
12.10.2019 - 23.2.2020, Nelimarkka Museum, Alajärvi Finland
Finland 100 years Exchibition in Frame gallery Spain Exhibition closing