The Photographers' Gallery presents work by Finnish photographer Pentti Sammallahti. Having travelled extensively across the globe through his life, Sammallahti explores the beauty of the relationship between humans, animals, and the lands we inhabit with warmth and simplicity.
Pentti Sammallahti (b.1950, Helsinki) is a benchmark figure in contemporary Finnish photography. He began photographing at 11 and by 1971 began to travel and exhibit extensively throughout the world. Sammallahti’s travels across Europe, Scandinavia, Siberia, the far East and Africa, combined with his interest in fine printing and lithography, led him to publish numerous portfolios such as Ici et Loin (Actes Sud, 2012).
Sammallahti’s work has a supernatural sense of a moment suspended in time, with the sensitivity and beauty of the world displayed through its animalistic existence. As a wanderer and master craftsman Sammallahti records the relationships he discovers between people and animals in the far-off places he visits. As a passionate seeker of the perfect mechanical printing method, his own innovative printing techniques and reintroduction of the portfolio form have re-awakened broader interest in published photographic art.
Among his many achievements through his long career, Sammallahti has staged solo exhibitions at Paris’ Mois de la Photographie (1996), and at Houston Fotofest, Texas (1998), and was ranked among the famous French photographer Henri Cartier- Bresson’s 100 favorite photographers for his Foundation’s inaugural exhibition in Paris, and staging a major retrospective at The Recontres d’Arles in 2012. His works can be found at the Victoria & Albert Museum, London, England; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas, USA; Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris, France; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, the Netherlands; Museum fur Kunst und Gewerbe, Hamburg, Germany; Moderna Museet / Fotografiska Museet, Stockholm, Sweden; and The Finnish State Collections and the Photographic Museum of Finland.