Tanja Koljonen is born in Finland and currently based in Helsinki, Finland.
She earned her MFA from the School of Art and Design at Aalto University in 2014. Currently she is extending her knowledge in the printmaking department in the Academy of Fine Arts, Helsinki. For the recent years her artistic work occupies largely and intermediate ground between the textual and the visual, a place where the boundaries of images are in constant flux. By cutting, covering, editing, erasing and rearranging the collected material the initial visual logic and semantic order of text and image are disrupted. Her work contests language-specific ideas of lexicality, legibility, and intelligibility, and draws our attention to the ways in which language and reason are tied to one another, reminding us that we can never be sure of the truths and realities in things spoken and written, seen and heard. When materials are detached from their original function and meaning, the habits and boundaries of seeing and reading are challenged. 

Solo exhibitions

2018 Waiting for the clouds to Vanish, Photographic Centre Nykyaika, Tampere, FI
2017 MERZ Sammonkatu, Tampere, FI
2017 Photographic gallery Hippolyte, Helsinki, FI
2016 Between Two Dots, Gallery Taik Persons, Berlin, DE
2015 Päätäntähäntä (with Anne Yli-Ikkelä), Gallery Huuto Jätkäsaari, Helsinki, FI
2015 Waiting for the Clouds to Vanish, Künstlerhaus Bethanien Gallery, Berlin, DE
2012 Repetitive gestures (with Jaana Maijala), Gallery Taik, Berlin, DE
2012 Let Me See You (with Jaana Maijala), Napa Gallery, Helsinki, FI

Selected group exhibitions and presentations

2021 Drawing a Tiger, Galerie Anhava, Helsinki, FI
2019 Présences voyages, Collection 49 Nord 6 Est Frac Lorraine, Metz, FR
2019 Stoned Water of a Deep Lake, group presentation at LIA Program Leipzig, DE
2018 Cyclic Repetitions, together with Kristján Guðmundsson, Rainer Paananen, Finnbogi Pétursson, Mikko Rikala and Ragna Róbertsdóttir, Gallery Taik Persons, Berlin, DE
2018 Maanantai Collective at Innsbruck Biennale, Innsbruck, AT
2016 Wasting My Grammar, together with Cia Rinne, gallery Manieré Noire. Reading at the opening of the exhibition, Poet's Corner Mitte as part of Berlin Poesi Festival, Berlin, DE
2016 Ars Auttoinen, Auttoinen, FI
2015 TOMROM, Together with Andreas Tellefsen, Marit Roland, Joakim Blattmann, Aiko Tezuka, Marianne Heier, Iselin Linstad Hauge, Christina Leithe H, Mattias Härenstram, Rikke Lundgreen, Ignas Krunglevicius, Virginie Rebetz and Sam Smith, Larvik/Sandefjord, NO
2015 Reintepreting the Frame, The Finnish Museum of Photography, Helsinki, FI
2015 Notes on Location, DEN FRIE Center for Contemporary Art, together with Cia Rinne, Tove Storch, Kasper Hesselbjerg, Anngjerd Rustand, Amalie Smith and Nanna Debois Buhl, Copenhagen, DK
2015 How to Play, together with Dominique Koch and Romy Rüegger, Gallery Annex14, Zurich, CH
2015 Displacement, together with Jaana Maijala, Kalle Kataila and Mikko Rikala, Gallery TaiK Persons, Berlin, DE
2015 Intepreting the Frame, Gallery Augusta together with Juuso Noronkoski, Mikko Rikala, Jonna Kina and Liinu Grönlund, Curated by Boshko Boshkovic, Suomenlinna, Helsinki,FI
2015 ARCO, Presented by Gallery TaiK Persons, Madrid, ES
2015 Between Flashes of the Lighthouse by Maanantai Collective, Galerie van Der Mieden, Bruxelles, BE
2014 Art Berlin Contemporary, presented by Gallery TaiK Persons, Berlin, DE
2014 Artissima, Torino, IT / Vienna Art Fair, Vienna, AT / Unseen Photo Fair, Amsterdam, NL / CHART Art Fair, Copenhagen, DK Presented by Gallery Taik Persons, DE
2014 Nine Nameless Mountains, Galleri Monopol, Warsaw, PL
2014 On My Transsitional Table, Eerikinkatu, Helsinki, FI
2014 Maanantai Collective at ARCO Art Fair, Madrid, ES
2014 Maanantai Collective, Galleri Gro, Pietarsaari, FI
2013 Paris Photo'13, Paris, FR
2013 Gallery Brandstrup, Oslo, NO
2013 Vienna Art Fair, Vienna, AT
2013 UnseenPhotoFair, Amsterdam, NL
2013 Summer School, Photographic Centre Peri, Turku, FI
2013 Summer School, The Finnish Museum of Photography, Helsinki, FI
2013 Ani Molnár Gallery, Budapest, HU
2013 Maanantai Collective, The Finnish Museum of Photography, Helsinki, FI
2013 Maanantai Collective, Alt.+1000 Photography festival, Rossiniére, CH
2013 At the End of A Rainbow, Felleshus, Berlin, DE
2010 Maijala-Koljonen-Kopkina, Photographic centre Peri, Turku, FI

Public artwork

2018 Brief history of Continuity by Maanantai Collective at the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment in Helsinki, FI


2018 Text The Knower’s Knotted Finger in the publication ’WOR(L)D — Carl Fredrik Reuterswärd, published by Bokförlaget Arena in connection with the exhibition ’Tecknet, Ordet, Sign, Word, Number’ in Landskorna Konsthall, SE. ISBN978-91-7843-523-4

Festivals and screenings

2011 Cartes Flux, Media Art festival, Cable Factory Valssaamo, Helsinki, FI
2010 Cologne Off VI, International Videoart Festival, Cologne, DE
2010 Gaala, Ateneumsali, Helsinki, FI
2009 Glimmer 2009, 7th International Short Film Festival, Hull, UK
2009 dok art international documentary and videofestival, Szczecin, PL
2009 kurye International video festival, Istanbul, TR
2009 video channel 2009, One Minute video festival, Cologne, DE
2009 Naoussa International Short Film festival, Naoussa, GR
2009 Palazzo Barberini screening nights, Senigallia, IT
2009 Aarau International Video Festival, AM
2009 Kinos 09, International short film festival, Lahti, FI
2009 Yerevan International film festival, Yerevan, AM
2009 Kultflux Pavillion River Neris, screenings, Vilnius, LT
2002 International film and videofest, Pärnu, EE

Publications and works in publications

2014 Helsinki School Vol.5, Hatje Cantz, DE
2013 Nine Nameless Mountains by Maanantai Collective, Kehrer Verlag, DE
2013 Väritettyjä totuuksia / Book of Lies, Musta Taide, FI
2013 Let Me See You (together with Jaana Maijala), self published, FI
2012 Poems from the Supermarket (together with Jaana Maijala), self published, FI

Selected grants

2019 Arts Promotion Centre Finland, FI
2018 3-year artist grant, Arts Promotion Centre, FI
2017 Arts Promotion Centre Finland, FI
2016 Frame Contemporary Finland, FI
2016 Arts Promotion Centre Finland, FI
2015 Arts Promotion Centre Finland, FI
2013 Arts Council of Finland, FI
2013 Kordelin Foundation, FI
2012 Aalto University of Arts, Design and Architecture Helsinki, FI
2010 University of Art and Design Helsinki, FI


2018-19 3-monthNordic Artist at LIA - grant supported by Goethe Institute, Leipzig International Artist Program, Leipzig, DE
2015 2-month Kempinski Young Artist Grant, Shanghai, Beijing, CN
2014 6-month International Studio Program Künstlerhaus Bethanien, Berlin,DE

Works in collections

La Gaia Collection, IT
Collection 49Nord 6Est Frac Lorraine, FR
Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art, FI
Valtion taideteostoimikunta, FI
Artphilein Foundation, LI
Københavns Billedkunstudvalg, DK
Region Skåne Konstservice, SE
Sammlung SPALL-ART, AT
Private collections AT, DE, PL, FR, US, DK


Union of Artist Photographers, FI
Maanantai Collective, FI