The main focus of Platform has been to present and produce contemporary art in Vaasa with emphasis on site specific art, community art, or art projects that have some local connection. Since an important part of Platform's activities are creating local interaction it gradually made sense to emphasize the residency program. It turned out that the projects and exhibitions made on site by artists who stayed a longer period in Vaasa seemed to work better – in the sense that they got more local attention and usually also were more interesting to us.
Previously the residency has been divided into two different programs, an international and a Nordic. For the International Program the selection was based on invitation conducted as a co-operation between similar art spaces or initiatives around Europe – and sometimes also inviting previous artists in residence to suggest coming artists. Co-operation partners have been Vector (Iasi, Rumänien), Skuc (Ljubljana), Space (Bratislava), Via (Dublin), Platform Garanti (Istanbul) and 1:1 (Rome). The selection is now based on an open call, as the Nordic always was.
We offer the artist a stay in Vaasa for a minimum of 6 weeks up to a maximum of 4 months. However, the regular period is 2 months. A studio space, accommodation, travel expenses (cheapest possible covered), and living expenses are provided. We also offer a small production budget, which the artist may reimburse by presenting original receipts of purchases, specifically connected to the current project.
The studio is located in an old military barrack in central Vaasa. It is a large space shared with the office of Platform, and is divided by a wall. The building hosts also local artists. The accommodation is a big loft located in an old soap factory, a 10-minute bike ride from the city centre. In addition, there is a bike, a set of tools and equipment available for the artist. There is wireless broadband access in the studio.
The artist has a contact person who is in charge of necessary arrangements, but note that this is voluntary work so if any additional assistance is needed it has to be agreed upon well in advance.
We ask the artist to realize a project, which can be presented either during the residency or at a later stage. After the project is finished the artist should submit documentation of it, as well as press release text etc. The artist is also expected to give a public talk about his/her work, which is normally done in the beginning of the stay, in order to get to know people.
We expect the artist to be able to communicate in English, Swedish or Finnish.