In the summer of 2013, I traveled to Finland — 100 years after some of my ancestors left to relocate to the United States — to spend two months at Arteles Creative Center in Hämeenkyrö. During my time in Finland, I visited and filmed the locations in Tampere where my great-grandmother used to live and work. With the help of staff at the Arkisto office in Tampere, I obtained images of century-old architectural plans for the home, which I used to frame a video projection when I returned to the US.
I had discovered that where people once lived on Kullervonkatu in 1913, now sits a row of shops, including a Koti Pizza. I saw an interesting connection between my search for home and this pizza chain in the word ‘koti’ (Finnish for ‘home’). Using this footage I had taken in conjunction with a new video I made, I juxtaposed a video of the pizza shop at closing time with a video of my partner and I making “Pizza Americana,” as described on the Koti Pizza website, in our own home. The intention of the video was to connect the physical space with the knowledge of what it once was, while also hinting at the impossibility of ever really connecting to the past.