Niina Vatanen

Born 1977, Kuopio, Finland
Lives and works in Helsinki, Finland


2005-2008 Master of Arts, University of Art and Design Helsinki, Department of Photography, Helsinki, FI
2006-2007 Academy of Fine Arts, Minor subject studies, Helsinki, FI
2003-2004 University of Barcelona, Department of Fine Arts, Exchange program, Barcelona, ES
2000-2004 Bachelor of Arts, University of Art and Design Helsinki, Department of Photography, Helsinki, FI

Current & Upcoming

The Finnish Museum of Photography, FI
24.5. – 1.9.2024

Images that Fall from the Sky
State Gallery of Art, Sopot, PL
8.8. – 5.10.2024

Solo exhibitions (selected)

2022 Gravity Experiments and Cyclic Phenomena, Persons Projects, Berlin, DE
2018 Time is a Tragedy (Vol. II), Photographic Centre Peri, Turku, FI
2017 Time is a Tragedy, Forum Box, Helsinki, FI
2016 Time is a Triangle, Photographic Gallery Hippolyte, Helsinki, FI
2015 Beyond the Visible Surface, C/O Berlin, Berlin, DE
2014 Archive Play, Golden Thread Gallery (with Hertta Kiiski), Belfast, UK
2014 Glimpses of the Unattainable, The Finnish Museum of Photography (with Hertta Kiiski), Helsinki, FI
2014 Cloud Hunter’s Eyes, TR1 Kunsthalle, Tampere, FI
2013 Cloud Hunter’s Eyes, Galerie Pleiku, Berlin, DE
2012 Grey Diary, Gallery Ratamo, Jyväskylä, FI
2010 Kaunokirjoitusta (Cursive), Photographic Centre Peri, Turku, FI
2010 Grey Diary, Gallery Taik, Berlin, DE
2010 Kaunokirjoitusta (Cursive), Gallery Huuto, Helsinki, FI
2006 The Red Letter (and Other Confessions), Photographic Gallery Hippolyte, Helsinki, FI

Group exhibitions (selected)

2024 Photo London, Persons Projects, London, GB
2023 Disappearances, Fotografisk Center, Copenhagen, DK
2023 CHART 2023, Kunsthal Charlottenborg, Copenhagen, DK
2023 Bindings/Sidoksia, VB Photography Centre, Kuopio, FI
2022 When the Wind Blows, KUNST HAUS WIEN, Vienna, AT
2022 Athens Photo Festival, Photobook Exhibition, Athens, GR
2022 Notes from a Seamstress’ Daughter, Persons Projects, Berlin, DE
2022 Faraway Futures Today, Pikku-Finlandia, Helsinki, FI
2022 Foto Wien, Focus Photobook, Vienna, AT
2021 Paris Photo, Persons Projects, Paris, FR
2021 New Perspectives Through Photography, Kunsthalle Helsinki, Helsinki, FI
2021 Échos système, Manuel Rivera-Ortiz Foundation, Arles, FR
2021 CHART 2021, Kunsthal Charlottenborg, Copenhagen, DK
2021 ÖRES 21 Summer Exhibition, Örö, Kemiönsaari, FI
2020 Festival Circulation(S), Paris, FR
2020 CHART Art Fair, Fotografisk Center, Copenhagen, DK
2020 A Kiss Given by Time to Light, Persons Projects, Berlin, DE
2020 NURTURE, NATURE, David Behning Galerie, Düsseldorf, DE
2019 Eating Pineapples on the Moon, Riga Photomonth, Riga, LV
2019 Foto Wien, Photobook exhibition, Vienna, AT
2017 Between the Past and the Future, Mikkeli Art Museum, Mikkeli, FI
2017 State of the Art – Vielä hetki lapsena, Heinola Art Museum, Heinola, FI
2017 Sanoinkuvaamattomasta faktantarkistukseen, The Aine Art Museum, Tornio, FI
2016 Secret Agent, Guest Projects, Sunbury House, London, GB
2015 Paris Photo, Gallery Taik Persons, Paris, FR
2015 Secret Agent, The Finnish Museum of Photography, Helsinki, FI
2015 I plunge into black holes and emerge intact, Gallery Taik Persons, Berlin, DE
2015 Reframe Memory, Athens Photo Festival, Athens, GR
2015 The future’s not ours to see, Triennial of Photography Hamburg, Hamburg, DE
2015 Knowledge, Photographic Gallery Hippolyte, Helsinki, FI
2014 Paris Photo, Gallery Taik Persons, Paris, FR
2014 Vienna Fair, Gallery Taik Persons, Vienna, AT
2014 Photobookshow – Brighton Photo Biennial, Brighton, GB
2014 Unseen Amsterdam, Gallery Taik Persons, Amsterdam, NL
2013 Paris Photo, Gallery Taik Persons, Paris, FR
2013 Viennafair, Gallery Taik Persons, Vienna, AT
2011 Female View, Fotoraum, Vienna, AT
2011 Touching Dreams, The Danish National Museum of Photography, Copenhagen, DK
2010 Daegu Photo Biennale, Daegu Culture and Arts Center, Deagu, ROK
2010 Photography and Video NOW, Helsinki Art Museum Meilahti, Helsinki, FI
2009 Helsinki School, Loft Project ETAGI, St Petersburg, RUS
2009 Like a Thief in the Night, The Town Museum of Jakobstad, Pietarsaari, FI
2008 Rose Boréal, Palais des Beaux Arts de Lille, FR
2008 Like a Thief in the Night, Gallery Elverket, Tammisaari, FI
2008 Masters of Arts, University of Art and Design Helsinki, FI
2008 Rose Boréal - Photographies de l’Ecole d’Helsinki, ENSBA, Paris, FR
2007 Paris Photo, Gallery TaiK, Paris, FR
2007 Art Forum Berlin, Gallery TaiK, Berlin, DE
2007 Helsinki School, The Finnish Museum of Photography, Helsinki, FI
2007 Uutuus - Nyhet!, Häme-Gallery, Lahti, FI
2006 Passing Energy, Eerikinkatu open-air gallery, Helsinki, FI
2004 Artist in the Picture, Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma, Helsinki, FI
2003 The Black Jovos meet Stereo Kerava, Kerava Museum of Art, Kerava, FI
2003 Black Jovos, Gallery Myymälä 2, Helsinki, FI


2019 Time Atlas, Kehrer Verlag, Germany
2014 Archive Play, Kehrer Verlag, Germany
2013 A Room’s Memory / Huoneen muisti, monograph, Kehrer Verlag, Germany

Publications (selected)

2023 Forsvindinger/Disappearances, Fotografisk Center, Denmark
2022 When the Wind Blows – Air, Wind, and Breath in Contemporary Art, De Gruyter, Germany
2021 ARLES 2021, Les Rencontres de la Photographie, Actes Sud, France
2021 Memory, Memory, Memory, VOSTOK Magazine, July – August, VOL. 28
2020 The Age of Collage Vol. 3, Gestalten, Berlin, Germany
2019 The Helsinki School, The Nature of Being, Vol. 6, Hatje Cantz, Germany
2019 Transeurope Magazine, 31 European photographers
2018 Tiheä hetki – The Yearbook of Finnish Photography, Musta Taide, Finland
2014 The Helsinki School, From the Past to the Future, Hatje Cantz, Germany
2011 The Helsinki School Vol. 4, A Female View, Hatje Cantz, Germany
2010 4. Europäischer Monat Der Fotografie Berlin, Kulturprojekte Berlin GmbH
2009 The Helsinki School Vol. 3, Hatje Cantz, Germany
2008 Rose Boréal: Photographies de l’Ecole d’Helsinki, ENSBA
2008 Like a Thief in the Night –exhibition catalogue, Proartibus, Helsinki
2008 Masters of Arts 2008 –exhibition catalogue, University of Art and Design Helsinki


Arts Promotion Centre Finland
City of Helsinki
Frame Contemporary Art Finland
Kone Foundation
The Arts Council of Uusimaa
The Finnish Art Association, Grant for Young Artists
The Finnish Cultural Foundation
The Finnish Cultural Foundation/Uusimaa Regional fund
The Paulo Foundation

Awards & Nominations

2022 Time Atlas, shortlist, Foto Wien, Photo Book Award
2020 Time Atlas, shortlist, Les Rencontres D’Arles, Author Book Award
2019 / 2020 Time Atlas, nomination, Images Vevey Book Award
2015 Archive Play, selected title, German Photo Book Award


The Association of Photographic Artists
Örö Residency Center Association

Works in collections

Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art
Saastamoinen Foundation/EMMA Espoo Museum of Modern Art
State of Finland
The Finnish Art Association
The Finnish Museum of Photography
Private collections FI, DE, DK, FR, GB