Aura Saarikoski: Grey Mélange

Photographs and concepts: Aura Saarikoski
Graphic design: Jaakko Suomalainen
Texts: Aura Saarikoski
Translations: Kasper Salonen
Language: Finnish, English
Retouching: Petri Kuokka
Publisher: Khaos Publishing
Released: May 2022
Edition: 210
Printing: Printon AS, Tallinna
ISBN 978-952-94-6116-5

Year: 2023
Dimensions: 25 x 2 x 17 cm (P x K x L)

On the way home from a birthday celebration, Saarikoski found herself weeping on a street corner in the embrace of a comforter. A dark stain of tears and mascara remained on the comforter’s shirt, directly over their heart. As time passed and the shirt remained unwashed, the stain accumulated significance, bearing witness to both grief and solace. Grey Mélange is a book that combines photographs and text to explore the conditions and ethics of autofiction and how lived experiences can be transformed into art.

The publication is based on an exhibition of the same name held by Aura Saarikoski at the Hippolyte Gallery in January 2022. Both the exhibition and the publication are based on the events described above, which took place some years ago. Throughout the book, pictures of the exhibition’s setup and location, as well as works featured in the show, are presented alongside text that features conversations between the comforter and the comforted, as they contemplate who should be credited for the work. The book navigates the roles of the main character and the supporting cast, and explores the power of the narrator, whose voice ultimately belongs in the autobiographical work, and how we remember and shape our own memories into a version that resonates with our lives.

The publication was designed by graphic and font designer Jaakko Suomalainen in collaboration with Aura Saarikoski. The texts are in Finnish and English, and Kasper Salonen is responsible for the translations in the publication.


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