Born in 1988 in Helsinki, Finland, Jussi Pirttioja studied art in Saimaa University of Applied Arts in Imatra specializing in painting. He further developed his skills in anatomical drawing and portrait painting as an exchange student in the Repin Saint Petersburgh State Academic Institute of Painting, Sculpture, and Architecture. After graduating in 2016 he has been working and living in Lappeenranta. He has held several solo exhibitions and taken part in group shows and competitions in Finland. Pirttioja's work is a mixture of traditional portraiture with surreal settings and expressionistic flourishes.
“The human figure is the foundation for all my work in one shape or form. Portrait-painting is all about capturing the essential character of the sitter and this is something I aim for in my work as well, be it imaginary or a living person.
I choose my subjects according to what provides me the greatest pleasure to paint. I utilize recurring motifs that appeal to me visually. Mundane things like graffiti and old sofas for example. I like to see signs of decay and wear in my work. I think this gives a sense of lived experiences to the picture. I`m pretty loose with my process. Sometimes I start sketching from an unfinished painting and compose variations. These then lead to new paintings and ideas. Narratives are central part of my work but I don`t want to spell it out for the viewer. The story must be left open for interpretation while at the same time providing something for the viewer to latch onto."
My working process: www.instagram.com/jussipirttioja/