Atelieri O. Haapala had a monthly day for private photo shoots. We did portraits for weddings, families and birthdays. Inspiration for the pictures came from the history but the interpretation was ours. Portraits were usually planned together with the customer and sometimes they were remakes of actual old photographs.
The series Adventures constitutes works reminiscent of movie stills in which our characters Mrs. O. Haapala and Mr. Helmut Schweinstein appear in a range of scenes taking place at the turn of the 19th and 20th century.
The images show phenomena that were distinctive to the time. They seem fascinating, romanticized, even objectionable. A century ago the world was undergoing major changes: the industrial revolution had brought wealth and technology. Medicine had developed, a new middle class had emerged and equality issues were slowly being evolved. There was strong optimistic trust in the future that was only to be crushed by the two World Wars.
Later on we have seen what the industrialization and its innovations have brought upon us: a polluted planet and cruel wars. The information overflow has made us numb and created a looming dystopian threat. The fin-de-siècle flickers in our imagination as a brass-shimmering era when development advanced without plastic, concrete suburbs or a bad conscience about wasting natural resources.
During years 2008 - 2016 Atelieri O. Haapala's photo booth toured 80 events, including burlesque festivals, vintage markets, historical balls, city festivals, event days at museums, dance festivals, and theme parties.
Atelieri O. Haapala's event photography was both documentary and performative and was inspired by the touring market photographers of 19th century. It was an occasion where audience could enter into a small alternate reality for a moment and pose in front of the hand-painted backdrop in the direction of Mrs O. Haapala (Salmi), while Mr Schweinstein (Melander) operated the camera.
The format of these event photos was inspired by the cabinet card. Both digital photo and photo print imitate the late 1800s' photo that was mounted on cardboard.
Here's a small selection for you to browse. We have more than 6000 event portraits altogether! Below the gallery you’ll find a list of the events we photographed at.
Nearly all of the events photos can be found on our Facebook page.
Atelieri O.Haapala had a monthly day for private photo shoots. We did portraits for weddings, families and birthdays. Inspiration for the pictures came from the history but the interpretation was ours. Portraits were usually planned together with the customer and sometimes they were remakes of actual old photographs.
During the years we were commissioned to do several staff portraits. We have photographed professionals from hairdressers to AI-researchers and Michelin cooks.
Our works can be seen also in a few Finnish movies too: The Midwife (Kätilö), Purge (Puhdistus) and The Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Mäki (Hymyilevä mies) in which we did a small cameo role.
Rise of the new burlesque culture in Finland and birth of Atelieri O. Haapala happened at the same time. The dawn of burlesque goes back to late 19th century variety theatre and that connected our worlds naturally. We have photographed both Finnish and international burlesque stars.
Classic paintings and French postcards have been our inspiration for the boudoir pictures. Our models include both burlesque performers and “common” people.
7 September – 11 November 2018
Parallel Times, Atelieri O. Haapala’s images shown side by side with pictures by Victor Barsokevitsch (1863-1933). VB photographic Center, Kuopio, Finland
I ́ve got you under my skin, group exhibition
Voipaala Art Centre, Valkeakoski, Finland
Time Travel, solo exhibition
Photographic Centre Peri, Turku, Finland
VI International Festival of Photography PhotoVisa, Krasnodar, Russia
Restrospective 2008-2014, solo exhibition
Northern Photographic Centre, Oulu, Finland
Dress Up, group exhibition
Panopticon Gallery, Boston, MA, USA
Alter Ego, solo exhibition
Lönnström Art Museum, Rauma, Finland
Alice in Wonderland, group exhibition
ECCO Espacio de Creación de Contemporánea, Cádiz, Spain
5 Years Of Glitter And Mayhem, group exhibition
Jukka Male museum, Helsinki, Finland
Alice in Wonderland, group exhibition
Logomo, Turku, Finland
Atelieri O. Haapala, solo exhibition
Finnish Museum of Photography, Helsinki, Finland
Cabinet card refers to standard-sized photographs mounted on card measuring 10,5 x 16,5 cm (4,25 x 6,5 inches).
Cabinet card was introduced first time in Britain by Windsor & Bridge photographic studio in 1863 and it reached its popularity peak in the 1870's. Another popular format was carte-de-visite, French invention by André-Adolphe-Eugène Disdéri from the previous decade. It was roughly the size of a modern business card, measuring 6,4 cm x 10 cm (2,5 x 4 inches) and used in a similar way - left at places visited to commemorate the visit, and were collected in beautiful albums.
The pictures were exposed on glass negatives and printed on light-sensitive paper, usually in sunlight. Enlargers were not used, instead the pictures were printed as contact copies on thin paper which needed a thick card to be mounted on. These cards often had gilded edges and they were beautifully decorated on both sides, with the name and address of the photography studio on the back.
The cabinet card went out of fashion in the early 1900s, and a hundred years later Atelieri O. Haapala brought it back. The cards were printed with traditional platen press technique and had gilded edges and rounded corners. They were made in four different colours: sepia, crimson, cream and pink.
The Atelieri O. Haapala cabinet card was introduced to public at the Alter Ego exhibition in 2012.