From the “man I wish I had a time machine so that I could travel back to 2013 and know about this artist and his works at an earlier time but I guess it’s better later than never thanks to instagram user @siobhan.waters bringing him to my attention today”: the hypnopompic works of Kustaa Saksi
Kustaa Saksi is a Finnish artist and designer, based in Amsterdam, and a master of graphic storytelling through patterns, textile art and installation. Hypnopompic, a collection of eight limited edition jacquard tapestries, are woven from mohair and alpaca wool, cotton, and synthetic materials such as phosphate and metallic acrylic thread and were inspired by a member of Saksi’s family who suffers from hypnopompic hallucinations – a state of sensory confusion leading out of sleep, when the state of awakening gets mixed with the dream world into a surreal reality. On another level these surreal landscapes also refer to optical art, as Saksi explains: ‘The vivid textures and colours create new, radiant, psychedelic worlds.’
Through his medical research, Saksi has managed to link the state of ‘hypnopompic hallucinations’ with a view of the history of art and design. ‘I refer to scientific studies of the subject in my search for inspiration,’ he says. ‘The hypnopompic state has also been affiliated with visual delusions caused by migraine. These graphic patterns, designs and textures are thought to have contributed to the traditions of ornamentation, mosaic and textile.’
Saksi’s works have been exhibited at Victoria & Albert Museum, Cooper Hewitt and San Jose Museum of Art as well as galleries in New York, Paris, London, Amsterdam, Helsinki, Singapore, Berlin, Madrid, Milan, Hong Kong, Mexico City, Lima and Tokyo. Saksi has produced commissioned artworks for companies such as Nike, Issey Miyake, Ferragamo, Lacoste, Marimekko and Swedese.