Ninni Luhtasaari is a visual artist and musician who gets excited with proper rock gigs. She created a Weekly Mix playlist that’ll inspire us to jam or shimmy without inhibitions in the dark polar night.
Hi Ninni, how are you?
I’m tired now, because I just came back from a short trip to an exhibition in Berlin. Last evening, we just giggled in the backroom, even though I knew I needed to be on the return flight horribly early. Despite sleep deprivation, I’m doing rather well at the moment.
What’s on your wish list to Santa this year?
Salt and rye bread. Santa hasn’t been to my housewarming party yet.
What are you up to regarding work at the moment?
I rolled up a band for my solo project Ninni Forever Band, and we’ll have our first gig in Tampere in December. That is so amazing and exciting! I’m also putting together an invitational exhibition at Galleria Saskia to open on the first week of January.
How do you combine the roles of a musician, visual artist and mother?
Sometimes I make a little kitchen disco with my child, but I don’t think the roles come any closer than that. If I didn’t have a child, I’d probably wander about in life more. Now I have such tight schedules that I must do the work as soon as I have a chance. I couldn’t get any work done without the daycare system.
Where do you get your ideas?
Corporeality, illogicality, absurdity, digging through my subconsciousness… My work is to express instincts, so to speak. I get ideas form anything around me.
Who do you admire?
I admire people who can be gentle and loving – also to themselves. I really appreciate those who stay off the beaten path. Most of the people I admire at the moment are my friends.
You don’t seem to take yourself too seriously. Where does one learn that?
I guess it’s a type of defense reaction in me. It’s terribly scary to have to do something “embarrassing”. In these situations I tend to push myself towards “awkwardness” to reach it.
What is the craziest project you’ve done?
It was called ‘Food diary’. For a whole year, I photographed everything I ate or drank. I needed to be truthful, always. If the food on my table was bad but I’d already taken a picture, I needed to eat it up anyway.
What gets you really excited?
A proper rock gig! It can be my own or by another band.
Which skill of your grandparents do you envy?
Probably their gardening at the summer house, the way they keep the garden alive. They’re still so persistent at weeding. Then again, I never knew my other grandfather. He played the bass in a rockabilly band. I’ve never heard him play, but I imagine he was good. So, hypothetically, I could admire his bass-playing.
How would you save the world?
I hate to sound gloomy, but I think the world could be saved by getting rid of the people, at least momentarily… Or at least there should be some kind of a change in humanity and we should put more pressure on those in power. Perhaps an anarchist revolution?
What kind of a playlist have you put together for us and why?
To survive the darkness, I created an escapist playlist with which to jam, shimmy or tumble.