The Prison Mother’s Lullaby 2015, HD video 5,58”
The starting point of the work is the musical composition Fängelsemammans vaggvisa (The Jail Mother’s Lullaby, 2012) by Kaija Maarika Penttala. She composed the piece after reading a newspaper article about imprisoned mothers, living with their child in primitive cells with poor or no sanitary facilities.
The unfamiliar theme recquired me to gather knowledge from various sources; I read studies and visited Vanaja prison where Sanni Seppo and I had a workshop for some of the inmates. This is also where I got to know one of the mothers.
The workshop introduced me to previously unknown prison life, to crimes committed by women and to the punishments which follow the deeds. It made me reflect upon punishments and what isolation from society, people and intimacy might feel like. It was also interesting to learn that about 80 % of imprisoned women experience the prison environment to be safer than the outside world.
The collaboration with Penttala had started in 2012, as she together with Anton Kukkonen created the music for my short film SUR l’eau REAL. As conclusion for the project Penttala asked me to make a video work to her lullaby.
The result of this collaboration, the short film Fängelsemammans Vaggvisa is an experimental, poetic and symbolistic weave inspired by the theme.