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Juuso Westerlund October 9, 2014

Posted by Geoffrey Hiller in Finland.
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The invincible Kinnunen Brothers 2014 Finland

Juuso Westerlund (b .1975, Finland ) studied photography in the University of Art and Design Helsinki and Turku Arts Academy. Many of Juuso’s personal subjects deal with Finnish identity. He is fascinated by ordinary men living ordinary lives, doing or at least dreaming about something extraordinary. At the moment he is working with projects about his family and Kalevala, The Finnish national epic. In 2013, Juuso’s work was chosen among five  portfolios at the Arles Photography Festival. In 2011, he was nominated as the Finnish photographer of the year. Juuso shoots a mix of personal work and commissioned work for editorial and commercial clients both home and abroad. His work has appeared in: Le Monde M Magazine, Financial Times, VICE and New York Times. Juuso is currently based in Helsinki.

About the Photograph:

“The Finnish national epic, Kalevala, features the trials & tribulations of many mythological heroes. I’m searching for these legendary characters from the people of the same Kainuu region in Finland where the Kalevala stories were originally collected. In this image I have photographed three brothers who have won more or less every sports competition they have attended. The picture was taken at their living room and the shimmering things behind them are the trophies they have won. And there’s plenty more of those in the next room.”

“The brothers still live at their childhood home with their parents. The two on the left are twins and they share the same room as they did as a child. As in the mythological heroes there’s always something very heroic and tragical in the people I have photographed for this project. I believe these are the kind of people that the stories would have been told and collected in the time of writing of Kalevala. This picture is part of my personal project called Looking for Heroes which is also a part of a collaborative Kainuu-project with four other photographers. “