Work: “Disgust”, 110 x 95 cm, Acrylic on canvas 

Janne Saarinen, Visual artist

The painting depicts a withered person. The red and the green are mixed into dirty brown. The grey colour resembles rotten meat. My aim is to transmit ugliness that makes the rest of the world look even more beautiful. It is pleasant to process disgust through a painting, because a spectator may decide how long they wish to view the image. 

I received a degree in the visual arts during the Covid-19 pandemic. Painting alone for months ends in a white space with no one except me and my painting. No opening ceremony or guests at the exhibition. There is just me. I don’t know whether anyone views my art or whether it even matters. The hand disinfectant in shops is slimy and leaves a film on the hands. It smells contaminated. It is difficult to believe that anything so disgusting could genuinely clean something. In my free time, I stare at my phone and think about diseases. I imagine how a virus penetrates cells. There is something foreign in my body, and I cannot remove it.