Finish artist Esko Männikkö was nominated for his retrospective Cocktails 1990 – 2007, shown at Millesgården, Stockholm, Sweden (1 September – 4 November 2007).
Esko Männikkö became widely known for The Female Pike, which featured bachelors living isolated lives in the Finnish countryside. In this series, as well as his work Mexas (1999), produced on the border between Mexico and Texas, each photograph is instilled with the peculiarities and unique characteristics of the individuals. He captures a melancholic but beautiful sense of deterioration in series such as Organized Freedom (1999 – 2005) and Flora & Fauna (2002); and in his most recent and ongoing series Harmony Sisters, taken in farms and zoos around the world, abstract photographs of animals are rendered as still-lifes. Männikkö presents his photographs in assorted reclaimed wooden frames, weathered and aged by time, which lend his images a timeless, almost painterly quality.
Esko Männikkö was born in 1959 in Pudasjärvi in the northern part of Finland. He lives and works in Oulu, Finnland.
The exhibition of the Deutsche Börse Photography Prize 2008 is currently on show at The Photographers’ Gallery until 6 April 2008.
The other three finalists were John Davies, Jacob Holdt and Fazal Sheikh. Männikkö was chosen by the Jury members, Els Barents, Director, Huis Marseille (The Netherlands), Jem Southam, photographer (UK), Thomas Weski, Chief Curator, Haus der Kunst (Germany) and Anne-Marie Beckmann, Curator, Art Collection Deutsche Börse (Germany). The Chair is Brett Rogers, Director, The Photographers’ Gallery.