Eve Birgitta Grönlund

Home is not a House



“Where is home for you?,“ the automatic follow-up question asked after learning a person’s name. Home is relative not just to one’s needs but is also subject to the ever changing world around us. We are constantly trying to adapt, and places like home trigger self-reflection, thoughts about who someone is or used to be, or who they might become. We define ourselves partially through home, which is why we do things like decorate our houses and take care of our lawns. These large patches of vegetation serve little practical purpose, but they are part of a public face we put on, displaying our home as an extension of ourselves.
I started my project thinking of what home means to me, how strangely I feel being connected to many places at the same time. Over the years my mother became the symbol of the project. She always told me how Finland is not her home, but at the same time Russia, where she was born and raised, isn’t either. She always told me: “When a person is forced to talk in a foreign language, he loses 90 percent of his identity״. I have begun to see the depth and meaning of her words within myself and others.
In my work I observe the people around me, their longings and desires. Alienation is constantly present; the eerie beauty and sadness represents the suburban reality and the constant search for the place we belong to. I capture everyday life and the small irrational scenes, where the moment lingers and creates a revelation. The place becomes unimportant.