Erwin Laiho

Photo: Jutta Jokinen

Erwin Laiho (b. 1995) is a sculptor grappling with the fundamental building blocks and the geologic timeline of digital devices. The canvas of his conceptual practice is the material evolution that connects raw minerals in the Earth’s crust to consumer technology and the global internet infrastructure. Treating devices and components as pure stocks of matter, Laiho refutes the narrative of a “wireless” everyday in favor of disentangling their muddy “wired” underside.

Disfiguring the “black boxes” of devices, Laiho strips them of their pristine state and physical autonomy to uncover a sense of honesty without pretense – no longer apples, but oranges. Decontextualized and bare, the components are paired with minerals to form uniquely positioned artefacts in dialogue with the global supply chains and depleting mineral resources of the world and our pockets. Formally Laiho’s artworks make use of unusual methods of construction and installation which further add to a sense of disillusion from our devices as well as sculpture itself.