MOPE16, International performance festival

Mope16 is an international performance festival now organized for the fourth time by Platform rf., previously the festival has been held in 2002, 2005 and 2008. Originally named “Movement to performance” soon changed in to the short version of the title Mope. In the beginning the aim was simply to gather all so called performances from Vasa and elsewhere which were not directly related to “Art”, e.g. Wasa Tattoo shop did a hook-hanging performance with the tunes of Bon-Jovi in the background. Alongside with professional performance artists it made a new and strange combination! This uncanny mixture of different performances might be a reason that all three festivals have been successful in terms of audience and reception.



This year the event will take place on 2-3 September at Theatre Casa located on the old barracks area in Vaasa. The festival will begin on Friday 2nd at 18:00 and continue on Saturday 3rd at 14:00. The event has no entrance fee.

We are very pleased to present this year’s artists:

Leena Kela / FI

Willem Wilhelmus / NL/FI

John Court / GB/FI

Irma Optimisti / FI

Peter Rosvik / FI

Melanie Jame Wolf / AU/DE

Tomasz Szrama / PL/FI

Shahrzad Malekian / IR

Maurice Blok / NL/FI

Ali Al-Fatlawi och Wathiq Al-Ameri / CH/IQ

Moe Satt / MM

Márcio Carvalho / PT/DE

Disco i mitt hjärta / FI


We will keep the site updated and add more info regarding artists and schedule in the weeks to come.

In short, where: Theater Casa, Kasarmialue / Kasernområdet, when: 18:00 2/9/2016, 14:00 3/9/2016 what: Mope16.


MOPE16, Aftermath in pictures – Saturday


John Court


Leena Kela


Michel Ruths


Moe Satt


Sharhzad Malekian


Irma Optimisti


Márcio Carvalho


Ali Al-Fatlawi & Wathiq Al-Ameri


Disco i mitt hjärta

MOPE16, Aftermath in pictures – Friday

Peppe Rosvik


Melanie Jame Wolf


Willem Wilhelmus


Tomasz Szrama

MOPE16, Márcio Carvalho and Michel Ruths


Márcio Carvalho

Carvalho’s practice for the last five years have been focused on memory and its influences upon collective groups and individual people. Science and human behavior, network sciences, appropriation and fiction are some concepts and forms used by the artist to research on autobiographical, collective and cultural memory, and its impact into social, cultural, political and economic contemporary life. The multidisciplinary ability of crossing disciplines reframes his work in various formats such as live performance, film documentary, video art, photography and sculpture, always attempting specific relation with the context and site in which he is operating.

He is the co-founder and curator of the performance art program CO-LAB editions. The performance art program initiated at Savvy Contemporary in Berlin and will continue its second edition in Copehagen in collaboration with organization.

Learn more about Márcio Carvalho.

Michel Ruths

In the age of high educated professionalists we thrive, share export and import a lifestyle that does not seem too different from each other anymore. Questions occur when the lifespan turnes, and among them some issues are more profound when they go deeper, over seas, over time and make us sometimes question everything. I approach them with concepts based on curiosity and experience, merged into a reflection practised from today and yesterday, driven by spring to understand, criticize. and activate without a certain answer to be hold.


MOPE16, Shahrzad Malekian and DIMH


Shahrzad Malekian

Shahrzad Malekian (Born 1983, Iran) is an interdisciplinary artist working with video, performance and sculpture. Her works often embodied with contemporary human in her/his complex relations, power structure, and gender from the private to public domain. Malekian has a bent for enveloping the artistic concepts in layers of glamor, fantasy, and sarcasm, with socially critical and gender conscious statements. She has shown her sculptures in various exhibitions and biennials in Iran, along wearable objects she creates for her performances. Her videos have been shown internationally in group exhibitions in Brazil, USA , Germany , Sweden, Norway, Finland and London. Her video piece was selected for International Film Festival Rotterdam and Göteborg International Film Festival in Jan 2013. She was finalist for MOP CAP 2015 prize. Malekian lives and works in Tehran.



DIMH is a synth pop artist with strong 80’s influences. During his concert on Saturday evening the audience will experience an unique, solo performance. On other occasions DIMH performs his tongue-in-cheek pop music as a trio with live drums and lots of keyboards.

On MOPE DIMH will perform for the first time with nothing but raw synthesizers – nothing pre recorded, nothing fake – just pure synth pop good times. What better place than a performance festival to try something new, right?


MOPE16, Leena Kela and Ali Al-Fatlawi & Wathiq Al-Ameri


Leena Kela

I am a performance artist whose work evolves from observing everyday life and phenomena. I have been working with performance art since year 2000 and currently I am doing my doctoral studies at the Academy of Fine Arts, University of the Arts Helsinki. In my ongoing artistic research I focus on methods, phases and languages in collaboration processes between myself as a performance artist and experts and scientists from various disciplines, i.a. cosmologist researching dark energy.

I have presented my performances in a number of contexts in Finland, and internationally in performance art festivals, events and conferences across Europe as well as in Russia, Northern and Southern America, Africa, Australia and New Zealand. I work as co-artistic director of the international New Performance Turku Festival, organized annually in Turku Finland. I also curate other performance art events in Finland and abroad. Currently I am on artist grant awarded by Arts Promotion Centre Finland (years 2015-2019).

Learn more about Leena Kela

Ali Al-Fatlawi & Wathiq Al-Ameri

Ali Al-Fatlawi and Wathiq Al-Ameri (b. 1972 in Baghdad, Iraq) Since 1997 they live and work in Zurich, Switzerland.

Ali Al-Fatlawi and Wathiq al-Ameri create performances that reflect their history. They present a view from exile, combining a critical perspective with the hope of returning in their imagination back to homeland. Their art explores explores issues of confrontation and war. Ali and Wathiq received a classical education at the University of Fine Arts of Baghdad. Several years ago they decided to escape the regime of Saddam Hussein and embarked on an odyssey crossing the Iraqi border into Jordan, where they reproduced classical and Arabic paintings until they had enough money to reach Sudan. From there they traveled by truck through the Sahara to Libya and finally to Switzerland where they studied at the F+F Schule fur Kunst und Mediedesign. In Switzerland the also formed the studio group Urnamo with Wamidh Al-Ameri to share ideas and develop their art.

Artists statement :

The performances, which we present since 10 years, all have the same basic idea. We want to find a material with which we are as another substance, and combine it with the locality, in order to display different images. Does it positively or negatively affect our work? That is questionable. Certain, however, is that the action by the many areas of content and other art works differ. The large volume of material that go from place and time and the inexhaustible possibilities of topics, always makes the actions renewable and expressive. The same work can be monotonous, although no changes in the resulting images can be perceived. In another art form, these images of a work are not possible.

We believe that the whole action art work is designed to present images; but also moments without images. Under this form of experimental work in our presentation: images, moments, change, and disappear only remaining in our memories. We hope that this is what the audience will come across. Together, all the images of an action target, our present topic. You will be welcomed by images through translated feelings and not through the intellect. This makes a pure mediation possible.

Learn more about Ali Al-Fatlawi & Wathiq Al-Ameri


MOPE16, John Court and Willem Wilhelmus


John Court

John Court (b. 1969 in the UK, living in Tornio since 1997) is a duration performance artist for whom the time is one of the most important elements of his work. Sometimes that makes him performing for 8 hours, duration of a work day and sometimes performing the whole time the event is going on or the performance venue (museum, institution) is open each day.
More recently he has been interested in letting the objects and materials he uses in his performances to determine the duration of the piece. He doesn’t consider his performances solo works, since they always include collaborative elements from curators, organizers, artists, viewers, objects, spaces and time. Court’s works are sensible to the site and they often create a parallel rhythm within the rhythm of the site with the ongoing repetitious action. All his works are fundamentally concerned with drawing or writing, in that drawing connects the elements of line, movement, space and time.

Learn more about John Court.


Willem Wilhelmus

In this world of enlightened heroes like politicians, sportsmen, terrorists, businessmen, gurus, famous artists and whatever trademarked darlings of global media, I like the small corners of performance art. I like to be busy with themes that are recognizable for everybody: the joys and fear of relating, the longing for and shying away from contact, the getting entangled in a swamp of emotions, desperately trying, getting lost in futile attempts for importance, the illusion of certainty.

My performances are based on trust in my body. I like its movements, its expressions, and most of all its downright honesty. Preparing for a performance means stripping away all kinds of illusion. The leftover is a need to add something, something else, something new to what life is offering me. I am amazed myself that time and again this is possible with the simplest materials.

Learn more about Willem Wilhelmus.


MOPE16, Peter Rosvik and Tomasz Szrama



Tomasz Szrama

“I have chosen performance art consciously. The situation in which you, the spectators, are on one side and I am on the other suits me. I need that division in order to break it. Though everything doesn’t always go as I wish. It’s not easy.That’s why, naturally, my performances are about uneasy interpersonal relations.”

Tomasz Szrama (b. 1970 Poland) graduated in 1998 from Fine Art Academy in Wroclaw, Poland.He lives in Helsinki, Finland. Szrama shifts between multiple disciplines, including photography, video and other time-based works. Regardless the media, his work always had as the main thread methods of performance art, which began eventually to dominate the course of his artistic practice. Since 2008 he has been performing internationally in various events and festivals for example in US, Canada, China and Mexico. Szrama has been active performance art event co-organiser since 2005. From 2014 he started with Liina Kuittinen new series of events called TONIGHT.

Presently Tomasz Szrama is working as a producer, designer, technical manager and is responsible for live art events at HIAP – Helsinki International Artist Programme.


Peter Rosvik

Yhdistämällä analogisia, electronisia ja digitaalisia materiaaleja ja immateriaalisia elementtejä hänen työnsä tutkii useita yhdistelmiä visuaalista-, ääni- ja kehollista inhimillisyyden ilmaisua.
Peter Rosvikin performanssi työskentely juontaa leikkiin kahden konseptin välillä: taiteesta kulttuurisena muisona ja taiteena henkilökohtaisena identiteetin luojana.
Hänen tämän hetken työt keskittyy ilmentää yksilön kokemusta poissulkemisesta ja joukkoon sisällyttämisestä yhteiskunnassa ja kulttuurissa.

Genom att kombinera analoga, digitala, materiella och immateriella element i mina arbeten utforskar jag visuella och kroppsliga uttryck.
Jag spelar med föreställningar om konst som kulturella minnen och konst som personliga föreställningar om identitet,
Mitt arbete fokuserar på uttalanden och personliga erfarenheter av mänsklig utslagning och disintegration i samhället och kulturen.

By combining material and immaterial elements of analogue, electronic, and digital visualises his artworks extensively explores various combinations of visual, noise and body expressions as humanity.
Peter originates performances that play with conceptions of art as cultural memory and art as personal conceptions of identity.
His current artworks focus on statements of embodied experiences of human exclusion and inclusion in society and culture.

MOPE16, Moe Satt and Melanie Jame Wolf


Moe Satt

(b. 1983) lives and works as an artist and curator in Yangon, Myanmar. He started creating art after graduating in Zoology in 2005. Moe Satt is part of a new generation of Myanmar artists to emerge after the year 2000, with a different approach to making, from conception to embodiment. He was invited to be the resident artist from several locations including Rimbun Dahan (Malaysia, 2008), Hooyong Performing Art Center (S-Korea, 2008), 3331 Arts Chiyoda (Japan, 2011), De Deelstaat Nijmegen, (Netherlands, 2013). He has actively participated in live arts festivals in Asia, and occasionally in the West. He has participated in serval major exhibition including the Busan Biennale (2012), CAFA biennale (Beijing, 2013), Concept Context Contestation: Collective-Driven Art In Southeast Asia (Bangkok, 2013), and The Journal of the Plague Year (S Korea, 2014). Moe Satt also work regularly as a curator and he founded Beyond Pressure, an international festival of performance art in Myanmar.

Find out more about Moe Satt.

Melanie Jame Wolf

Savage Amusement is the name which expands across the work of interdisciplinary artist, Melanie Jame Wolf. ​Sometimes solo, sometimes with friends.This practice operates with greater and greater fluidity at points where the live performing body and the screen intersect and interplay; shaping through the ways in which these modes limit and extend one another in turn. Making work both solo and with friends, Melanie Jame focuses on the ways in which love, gender, and ghosts of many kinds – cultural, literal, and personal – come to be performed through various improvised and enculturated affective, aesthetic, and critical economies. The lineage of music video, and the play, fabulation and proliferation of queer personae are current strong formal influences on what she makes and does, and how she lives…​…all for your Savage Amusement.

She is also a member of ​Triage. ​

Since 2008 with Triage she has co-created and presented numerous works including: An Appointment with J Dark  (Arts House, Melbourne, 2012 – Nominated for a 2012 Green Room Award in the category of Outstanding Production: Creative Audience Agency), Strange Passions (Exchange Radical Moments! Festival of Live Art, Berlin, 2011), An Appointment with J Dark (Underbelly Arts Lab & Festival, Sydney, 2011) and It’s All About You (West Space @ West Wing, Melbourne, 2010).​  They are currently working on the 2014-16 European Cultural Commission project HOTEL OBSCURA.

Find out more about Melanie Jame Wolf.


MOPE16, Irma Optimisti and Maurice Blok



Irma Optimisti

Irma Optimist has for a number of years been a prominent figure in Finnish performance. She has adopted Optimist as a last name to counterbalance the Finnish melancholy. She has presented over 160 performances since 1989 in Finland, USA, Japan, Canada, Germany, Austria, Poland, France, Lithuania, Estonia, Belarus, Romania, Denmark, Sweden, Slovakia, Hungary, Israel, United Kingdom and Ireland.

Irma Optimist is working at the Turku School of Economics and Business Administration as a senior lecturer in Mathematics (PhD), specialized in chaos theory.

Irma Optimist’s performances intend to disturb the logic of science. Part of her work is aimed at disentangling formal language and, in Optimist’s own opinion, a performance is, first and foremost, an intellectual process. Using optimistic mathematics, she wants to restore the symbols of food, love and sexuality, since the body has exploded due to the demand for desire, utility and energy.

-Excerpt from the ELA archives, read more about Irma Optimisti in the archives.

Maurice Blok

Whilst concentrating on sculpting, during my studies, I realized that what occurred before the work was even presented was of as much importance to me as the final piece itself. Subsequently, I started carrying out short experiments in front of a video camera; something that soon became close to what is called performance art. Soon after my work evolved into actual performances, involving setting up and carrying out “actions” that bear aesthetic results in front of physical audiences.

Having worked physically, and using tools, on an object (as a sculptor) it was only natural to bring this to my action pieces too. Although my work is performative I still consider myself remaining with a sculptural attitude . Constructing and deconstructing whilst having some kind of interaction with audience (or not). Naturally, one’s performance art is ordered in a chronological manner, yet the viewer is not aware of this while encountering a performance.

Find out more about Maurice Blok here.

Joanna Kischka „ µ – micro “, exhibition and artist talk



„Migration always means a change, a change of place, the change of the known surrounding into something new and unknown.So when I come to a new environment and walk in it, move in it, don ́t I walk with every step into the unknown? Don’t  I enter it and make it in a certain way to mine? Conquer it. With every step in this unknown place I migrate to a new location. Don ́t I make it just with my presence somehow to mine? Don’t I leave in every location a trace and every place one in me? And if I walked an entire site, went through every road, didn’t I make it to my place?“







Joanna Kischka, studied Photography at the Folkwang University of Arts in Essen, Germany. Her idea during her residency is to walk the

whole public space of Vaasa. The walking is recorded by an GPS-tracker, so in the end there are exact recordings of the routes done. The performative aspect of walking is connected with photography. She wants to capture those places photographically, where she has the feeling of connection, or which brand into her visual memory. In the end, the tracks and the photographs will be published in a book. The whole project is an experiment with, space, memory and traces.






During the Night of the Arts Kischka presented her ongoing project „µ-Micro“. Using an analog compact camera, Kischka has collected images during 5 years. The photographic works are showing moments of dreaminess, of absurdity and beauty in everyday life. Just a little divergence in the way of looking, unveils the particularity of a certain moment. In a philosophic way, this work is searching for a truth behind the seemingly ordinary.






When an artist works with other people in co-creation of a public outcome, what kind of challenges and possibilities does participatory methodologies and documentary photography offer? Is it possible to find a new context in the tension between the two modes of process and outcome, when photographic subjects also become participants and co-creators of artistic work? How does the creative process influence the photographic activity and vice versa? How can one use the social and practical situations that arise as a result of an engaging strategy, to invent art and to explore the social interaction behind an image?

How may one create a space for aesthetics decisions and an artistic point of view while decentralizing authorship? Who is allowed to make a visual representation in a public space? [1] How can one be usefully engaged with individuals or a community and document it in the work? What kind of subtle, silent and in-built behaviour patterns do photographers use? What do we know about all the decisions a photographer constantly makes and how does one move as a photographer?
















All these questions were part of the art project BRIDGING ZIP-CODE 65, which explored the borders between camera-based art, documentary photography in particular, socially engaged art and public art. In this project the artists Maria Nordbäck and Brynhild Bye-Tiller were deliberately alternating between a traditional narrative photographic approach and socially engaged art, blurring the lines between art and documentary. They positioned themselves in the intersection between photography as documentation, photography as representation, photography as a relational tool and photography as activism.

Their main concern was to develop documentary photography as art and to explore its relationship to methods, structures, narration, activism, co-authorship, cooperation, involvement, learning processes, usability and public shaping of projects. BRIDGING ZIP-CODE 65 was a cooperation between the artists Brynhild Bye-Tiller (NO) and Maria Nordbäck (FI). Together they invited immigrants, asylum seekers and refugees in Vaasa to participate in an intensive and intimate photo workshop, which led to two art pieces; a dual photographic exhibition in the Mikola gallery put up by the participants and the artists, and a public display of photography inside a wooden house structure, also built by the participants at the Spring Fair in Vaasa Square.












Inside the Mikola gallery Bye-Tiller presented large format colour photographs chronologically displayed from different parts of the project with narratives strongly influenced by the social interaction and involvement. These works were presented alongside several series of photographs from each participant with portraits of Finns and Finnish nature. As part of the project, the public was asked to invite a refugee to their homes. During these visits and other activities several thousands of pictures were taken of which a small part was shown in the Mikola gallery and a substantial number (300) was displayed in public. In a temporary house, three walls made of a transparent plastic material were covered with pictures from the participants. The exhibitions gave them a chance to appear in a public space together with the artists.










The workshop laid the foundation of the project and the participants got the opportunity to develop their visual language as well as practical and technical skills. Photography became a way to connect with people inside postal code 65 (Vaasa city including Korsholm/ Mustasaari), hence the title, Bridging Zip-Code 65. For the artists, this project offered an opportunity to explore the tension between participatory methodologies and different photographic approaches. BRIDGING ZIP-CODE 65 included two lectures and a one-week extended photo workshop with a number of activities: street photography during the spring festival Vappu and Labor Day, nature photography in Öjens Nature Trail in Sundom, environmental portraits during several home visits in the Vaasa region, editing sessions, producing and setting up two exhibitions, building a house and extensive use of social media.

The participants were Marina Hokkonen (Russia), Anna Pettersson (Belarus), Ali Aljboory (Iraq), Khem Raj Pokharel (Nepal), Zuhair Qasm (Iraq), Ahmed Hakeem (Iraq), Othman Ibrahim (Iraq) and Mohammed Ameen (Iraq). Local partners were MIRA Centre, Welcome Office Vaasa, Vaasa Reception Centre.

Bye-Tiller was residence at Platform and Nordbäck is a member of Platform. The project was part of RECEPTION the 1st triennial of the COMMUNITY arts in Finland. The 1st Triennial of Coummunity Arts, can be found here:

Platform Live: Wilkinson & Tuomi, Vesa-Matti Kivioja

Vaasa with its two jazz clubs has a decent selection of music for the enthusiasts of the genre, although free jazz is unfortunately seldom heard in our town. Platform rf. is mending the lack by inviting one of Britain’s most remarkable saxophonists to Vaasa.

The Platform Live-events have contained a vast array of experimental performative art during the past years, on later days the events have focused on different performances. On Saturday 14.5. Platform live is held in the café of the Ritz-theatre in Vaasa, on stage we will experience two different approaches to experimental music. During the Night we will hear an electronic solo gig from Vaasa’s own Vesa-Matti Kivioja and the British-Finn free jazz duo with saxophonist Alan Wilkinson and percussionist Janne Tuomi.

Alan Wilkinsons (b. 1955) path started as a student of the fine arts in Leeds, but soon after graduating the brush turned into music and the saxophone. Wilkinson was active in the free jazz scenes of London and Leeds in the early 80’s, playing with names like Peter Brötzmann, Barry Guy and Keith Tippett. Later in the 1980’s a long lasting partnership with the guitarist Derek Bailey started and in 2001 the two released the album Duo. Wilkinson’s discography is also generally vast ranging from the early 1980’s up until the present day.

PercussionistThe concert in Vaasa will be the second Finnish tour for the Wilkinson, Tuomi setup. Tuomi (b. 1973) is a versatile percussionist, who finds his home not only in the percussion sectionof a symphony orchestra but also in the world of free jazz and on the stage of a sweaty rock concert. Tuomi has for example performed with the Avanti! Chamber Orchestra, the percussionband Osuma Ensemble, Circle and different Jussi Lehtisalo projects, saxophonist Jorma Tapio and the Rakka-band. Tuomi has released three solo albums and has partaken in over 30 other albums. He resides at the moment in Berlin.

The Platform Live-evening will begin with the Vaasa resident Vesa-Matti Kivioja, and by his own words he will be presenting: “some experimental ambient-dub-low tempo-stuff”. Vesa-Matti has been busy in the studio the past years as he has released the 12” record Lopun ajat (2013) and has an EP upcoming later this year with the record label Ljudverket from Vaasa. He is also managing the label Ostrobothnia Power Discs and last year he released a split 7” with Jepeekk with said label.                         His most recent work was a single with Meltdown Deejays Recordings.

Vesa-Mattis gig at the Gong-club in Turku last February can be tuned in on Soundcloud


Doors open at Ritz on Saturday 14.5. at 19.00 the music starts at 19.30. Tickets 5/3€, discounted price for students, pensioners, unemployed, conscripts, conscientious objectors, total objectors and members of art organizations.

Local A: Sculptural workshop in Ristikka

As an early start to the upcoming Vastaan+Otto / Mot+Tagning festival, with its main events in May 2016, Local A. (Jenny Berntsson & Felice Hapetzeder, SE) are giving a workshop in Ristikka Youth House in Ristinummi, Vaasa. More info about Vastaan+Otto, the  The 1st Triennial of Coummunity Arts, can be found here.

The workshop(s) are part of the Local A. project Sculptural Pavilion. More information about Local A. can be found on their web site.

UPDATE: The workshops in Ristikka spontaneously expanded into the Variska school in Ristinummi. Read more on the school blog!

”Metvikens sopfest“, Vaasa by Light 2015

project by Christoph Mügge, Platform residency november 2015
In ”Metvikens sopfest“ a blue, wooden construction seems to concurrently well out of three different garbage bins, and form a strong unity that also serves as pillars to support a tarpaulin.
The incorporated materials are a major part of the contemporary urban landscape and the various parts of mainly overlooked and decried parts of our everyday life are thoroughly arranged and intermingle in a transformative way that transcends both architectural and cultural hierarchies.
One of the garbage bins is for instance placed on a pedestal (out of concrete) and waste wood is enhanced and revives as a multifaceted construction that opens up a field of possibilities etched between breakdown and construction, detachment and attachment. Simultaneously, existing parts of the installation’s surroundings at Onkilahdenpuisto (Metviksparken) are highlighted and emphasized. During “Vaasa by Light 2015”, illumination seduces the passer-by to discover the work from different angles and look at what lies under the tent’s surface. It is up to the observer to constantly move between familiar life and its new incarnation as a vehicle for mind-blowing beauty.
The installation that is built under the harsh climate in November and can for example be read as an improvised emergency shelter is part of Platform’s theme ”Vaasa 20X0” that in my interpretation is Vaasa in a dystopian future where the welfare state has collapsed, living conditions and types of housing which we today primarily know from the Third World is part of the everyday and what previously had been called waste has got an entirely different value.

Fading Smoke


A performance event organised by Hiroko Tsuchimoto. Food & mingle afterwards!
Thursday, 29 October at 7-9 pm.
at Technobothnia, Bomullgränd 3 / Puuvillakuja 3, Vaasa
No admission fee
(Better life and better future)

It is over 400 years since our belief converted from divine providence to the development of technology. We have extended human capacity and successfully got rid of everyday’s fear of nature. With no doubt in the concept of progress, we have composed the infinite mission to be “better” than the past, and constantly updated our hope for the future.

(Past and future in Brändö)
fading smoke is an art project by Hiroko Tsuchimoto, in which she summarises her one-month residency in Vaasa. Her focus is the social impact of transitions in Brändö during the intervening quarter-century, -from cotton to knowledge industry. She chooses an old factory site as a stage and invite the audience to a site-specific performance. In this project Tsuchimoto comments on the universal purpose of our lives -”progress” and presents hidden question mark in the city narrative. This leads to an open discussion about the future of the island as well as our global economic system.

This project is a collaboration with Platform, Vaasa Museum of Labour and VAMK: University of Applied Sciences.
Graphic design: Nallebjörn
Food creation: Raawka
Reference: Ehrström, P. 2010. Från Bomull till kunskasindustri. Vaasa: Scriptum
Hiroko Tsuchimoto (b. Sapporo, 1984) is a visual/performance artist, living in Sweden since 2008.


She began her career at Musashino Art University in Tokyo and went on to study at Konstfack and Kungl. Konsthögskola (Royal Institute of Art) in Stockholm. Since moving to Europe, she has worked with ethnography as a subject matter.

In her art she shifts between grand narratives and everyday stories, highlighting the cultural construction of personal identity. She tells stories about otherness and the will to belong, based on her experiences as an Asian immigrant. This position gives her a bird’s eye view on both the Swedish – and Japanese society.

Her art deals with subjects such as cultural mapping, myths & magic - exploring Eastern & Western folklore, set in a present day context. She often includes a feminist perspective, problematizing traditional gender roles and Japanese politics.

Her goal is to make art that is easy on both critical eyes, and the “disinterested gaze” – creating an aesthetic experience with a deeper meaning underneath.





Platform-Vaasa has a pleasure to invite you to the next 1+1 TALK with MARIA NORDBÄCK AND KRISTINA KRAMER, initiated by Sencer Vardarman, a residency artist of Platform.

Kristina Kramer and Maria Nordbäck will both meet for the first time and talk about their projects and approaches towards participatory practises in artistic production and exhibition making.

Maria Nordbäck describes herself as a community artist. In her often site-specific artistic practise she works with different goups of people. Taking the role of a researcher she investigates different stories and social, political and cultural issues. Norbäck works with different media grouped around specific themes and meanings, ranging from video, photo, performance, installation to, most recently, a board game.

Kristina Kramer will talk about selected projects and past exhibitions that were based on collaboration and participation in a wider sense, such as „On Produceabilty“, a collaboration between alti aylik and nüans from Düsseldorf (Anna Heidenhain, Elmar Hermann, Maki Umehara) that started in 2008; particularly “Methodical Inquiries”, a series of „in-situ discussion experiments“ in collaboration with Adnan Yıldız and Övül Durmuşoğlu; and other projects hosted by Polistar. She will also talk about „even my mum can make a book“, a mobile fanzine and artist book archive that was started together with Gamze Özer and Timothee Huguet. The archive travells through different spaces and geographies and is open to anyone to join.

1+1 talk with Britt Kootstra and Mary Cremin

Platform-Vaasa has a pleasure to invite you to the next 1+1 TALK with Mary Cremin and Britt Kootstra, initiated by Sencer Vardarman, a residency artist of Platform.

The talk will take the format of a conversation between the artist and the curator as a means to explore each of their practices through the use of visuals and exploring the parallels and convergences of their areas of research. They will discuss works in progress teasing out the process of making in terms of exhibition making and the production of artworks. The talk will be informal and will encourage more of an open dialogue with the audience.

MARY CREMIN is a writer, art historian and independent curator based in Dublin. Cremin graduated from University College Cork with B.A. in History of Art and Political Geography (2004) and graduated with a Masters in Visual Art Practice (curating) from the Institute of Art,
Design and Technology, Dublin in 2007. Curatorial projects include Aether, Martin Healy at Oonagh Young Gallery, Dublin (2014), Misadventure Seeks Rainy Afternoon: Sonia Shiel, Oonagh Young Gallery (2013/2014) , Bring in the Noise, Ormston House & Limerick City Gallery (2013) , Lights, Camera, Action!, Temple Bar Gallery & Studios (2012) , Pilgrimage from Scattered Points: Luke Fowler, Temple Bar Gallery & Studios (2011), Sidney Nolan; Ned Kelly Series, IMMMA (2012-2013), Garrett Phelan, IMMA off site NEW FAITH LOVELSONG (2012), Conversations: Photography from the Bank of America Collection IMMA, (2012), Cyprien Gaillard & Koudlam, IMMA (2011). She was Project Manager, Richard Mosse, The Enclave, Irish Pavilion, Venice Biennale, 2013, prior to this she was Project Curator at the Irish Museum of Modern Art. She has produced major exhibitions on Eileen Gray, Lynda Benglis, Francis Alÿs, Carlos Garaicoa, Romuald Hazoumè, Gerard Byrne, and Alice Maher.

She was awarded the curatorial residency in Temple Bar Gallery & Studios, Dublin for 2010/2011, the visual arts curator residency, 2013 from the Irish Arts Council. In 2015, she curated a performance series at IMMA as part of the Summer Rising festival titled In the Silence of the Night including artists writers and experimental music; Ruth Proctor (UK), Sarah Jones (UK), Ella De Burca (Irl) Lee Welch (Irl/US), Sally Rooney (Irl), Dimitra Xidous (Gr), Claire-Louise Bennett (Irl) a n d D o r i t C h r y s l e r ( A t ) . S h e produced the Magnetism; Siobhan Hapaska (Irl), Luck Andrews (UK), Garrett Phelan (Irl), Mikala Dwyer (Au), Aleksandra Mir (Swd), Laura Morrison (UK), Igor Grubic (HR). She is the curator of Dublin City University art collection and is the curator of TULCA Visual Arts Festival, 2015.

BRITT KOOTSTRA (1976) graduated with a B.A. in Mixed Media from AKI, art academy in Enschede (1998-2001), and with a Masters in Fine Arts from the Sandberg Institute in Amsterdam, the Netherlands (2002-2004). Her work shows itself as ‘tableaux vivants’, either on hand processed analogue film or as performance in which seemingly everyday places and events seperate themselves from our world. Since 2009 she lives and works in Ostrobothnia, Finland.

She has shown works and exhibited nationally and internationally. Filmfestivals include AAVE Festival, Helsinki (2014), Toronto Urban Film Festival (2013) and International Film Festival Rotterdam (2010).

Vaasa 20X0

The VAASA 20X0 project culminated on September 3rd 2015 with a public walk visiting eight art works specifically produced for Vaasa. The artworks along the way were presented to the public by the artists. The walk started with the first art work in the public library and the second stop was at the market square statue of freedom and the by the neighbouring Tourist info. From there the walk continued to a seaside spot in front of the Vaasa prison and the last stops were in the park next to the Kuntsi museum and at the silos in the Inner harbour. The walk ended with a film screening and discussion at the Platform studio.


The works have been conceived by artists visiting the Platform residency program during 2014 and 2015 under the working title VAASA 20X0, with the aim to create possible scenarios, visions of and for a Vaasa in the future. The chosen artists took part in a workshop together with artists involved in Platform and other local actors. In the workshop the artists’ practices and interests were discussed, as well as local issues and circumstances for projects. At a later stage the artists returned to Vaasa to have an individual residency and work on their projects that finally were presented on the walk on the 3rd of September.

For information on each project see below.


The walk included works by: Ola Ståhl (Sweden), Wouter Osterholt (The Nederland/Germany), Guillaume Aubry (France), Liliana Basarab (Romania) in collaboration with Tuomo Väänänen (Finland), Hermann Hiller (Germany), Nurri Kim (UK/ South Korea, residency 2013) and Patrik Qvist (Sweden).

Ola Ståhl’s project Eftersläckning shown at the public library in Vaasa consists of an artist book of thirty-nine volumes accompanied by short pieces of writing entitled “Footnotes for a Monument.” Taking as its point of departure, the Finnish civil war and, in particular, the so-called White Terror and the detention camps run by white guards across Finland during and after the Civil War, the thirty-nine volumes seek to address issues around historiography and commemoration. Each page in the volumes represent one victim of the white terror; that is, one person executed or murdered by white guards, or one person dead from starvation or disease in the detention camps.

The volumes are bound in such way that they cannot be opened without being destroyed.They are, in a sense, reduced to their material components: paper and glue. They remain a set of books, but they are also, and at the same time, something other than that; a material book, an abstract mass, or, perhaps, a kind of monument.

The accompanying Footnotes for a Monument take the form of journal entries, compiled by Ståhl during his residency period in Vaasa. The notes move between and weave together citations from newspaper articles, media reportage, philosophy and critical literature, fiction and poetry, personal reflections and biographical events, providing a context for the work and placing the atrocities of the time within the context of the historical foundation of the capitalist state as well as its contemporary increasing global development.


Wouter Osterholt’s work Freedom Temple placed on the market square in Vaasa is a proposal for the construction of a never realized memorial project from right after the Finnish civil war. In 1918 Mannerheim announced a large-scale commemoration project in the form of a Temple of Freedom in Vaasa. The purpose of this building was to glorify the heroic actions of the white army, thus amongst other things concealing the atrocities committed against the socialists. Due to financial reasons the temple was never built, instead the statue of freedom was erected on the market square in 1938. Thinking about the 100th anniversary of the civil war, which will take place in 2018, Osterholt decided to reconsider Mannerheim’s original proposal. A drawing made by Finnish artist Albert Gebhard in 1922 reminds us of how the temple was once envisioned. This drawing was used as the basis for designing the new temple. During a consultation session in 2014 people in Vaasa were asked how they would design this memorial site today. Osterholt then selected one of the proposals to work with, which considers both the history of the Whites and the Reds.


Guillaume Aubry’s project Sad as stones (Vaasa) shown at the Tourist info is an addition to the video “World Heritage Site High Coast / Kvarken Archipelago” screened within the permanent exhibition at the Terranova Kvarken Nature Centre in the Ostrobothnian Museum. It consists of a distorted illustration of the land rising phenomenon, using artefacts and objects found during his residency time in Vaasa.


Liliana Basarab’s and Tuomo Väänänen’s work Walls/The Unseen presented outside the Vaasa prison is an audio installation that is based on workshops made together with inmates of the prison in Vaasa. The aim was to move from particular stories heard in prison to more of a general experience and to give space to several voices through the collective narrative, going back and forth from realistic descriptions to more abstract and conceptual ideas of what prisonment means. The project goal is to talk about the prison not only as a physical space but as a mental projection.

Hermann Hiller’s work And the gull glides hard to hunger over the murky sea for Vaasa, projected on the facade of the Kuntsi museum, deals with the energy of the city. A MegaWindmill is imposed on the facade of the Academill building containing a proposal for the silo buildings. Floodlights illuminating public buildings of the city are used as projectors of shadows created by pre-hung hanger gulls.


Nurri Kim’s film Tender transports us to a sunlit morning in Vaasa, to quietly witness the almost ritualistic washing of a newborn infant and an elderly man — respectively the town’s youngest and oldest residents. Closely following the interaction between the carer and the cared-for, “Tender” reminds us how profoundly we depend on the concern and labor of others. In this short film, Nurri observes and contemplates the passage of time, both in the changes it brings to all of our bodies, and in our continuous reliance on the others around us. By reminding us that we wouldn’t have been here without someone’s care, and cannot in the end survive without it, “Tender” quietly asserts the value of empathy and affective labor. It asks us to imagine how every attentive touch remains with us throughout our lives, embedded, carrying us from our past into the future.


Stunder av / …hetkiä / Vasa

project for Vasa by Patrik Qvist, Platform residency january 2015

Each new place we visit bears traces and crumbs of places previously seen; places where we have
already been, where we feel at home.
The familiar superimposes itself onto the new.
We shield ourselves from the unknown and unexpected by relying on images from our archive;
scents, sounds and outlines of environments where we claim a sense of belonging. We look for
And yet for each new place visited, there is an imperfect match of that which is already seen and that which
is beheld for the very first time. This area…or is it a negative space? – let us call it an overlap: This
overlap holds the greatest potential for sensation in the most literal meaning of the word. The
familiar suddenly calls out for re-evaluation. That which appears new stirs up feelings of
remembrance and recall; uncertain whose. (Is it me or something I read?)

On-site installation, Handelsesplanaden ,Vasa Jan 23rd 2015

The aim of this project is to create a series of interventions in the urban landscape. Short texts
placed on buildings in public spaces with suggestions in two languages- Finnish and Swedish. (With
a possible future addition of English)
Moments of happiness. Moments of burning desire. Moments of indecision. Moments of dire need.
While each text is particular to a specific site / building, it should be noted that the selection is
purely subjective. In terms of urban planning- to ”add value” to a certain neighborhood is usually
done by improvements of infrastructure, housing or commercial interests. These are effective (albeit
usually costly and more often than not disruptive) instruments geared towards what has become a
mantra of an inevitable need for socioeconomic growth. This project seeks to investigate a light
handed way to reinvest in the existing spirit of a place by poetic suggestion.

On-site installation, Kyrkoesplanaden, Vasa, Jan 25th 2015