Building a future city where all voices are heard

ANTI has always been an event strongly connected with the City of Kuopio. Places, people, communities and companies of the city are part of the network of contributors where the ANTI Festival was born and takes place. We want to participate in creating and developing a vibrant Kuopio and its urban culture where all voices are heard. Lately, it has been a joy to see how well Kuopio has succeeded in the rankings of Finland’s best places to live.

Alongside promoting urban culture and cultural participation, we have our strong will to always act at the forefront of the most contemporary art. We want to support artists and their work, enable works of art and projects, increase their visibility in different media and bring them close to audiences – whether they are local, global or virtual. By taking chances and trusting the artists, we also enable experimental projects that drive art forward.

These simultaneous objectives – developing artists, art and the city – come together excellently in the Future DiverCities – Creativity in an Urban Context project that started in 2016. At the core of the project is urban city space, its cultural diversity and all the voices in the city. Through residences and projects, we want to bring art close to the people of Kuopio and invite them to join together in making the city an even more vibrant European city where all voices are heard.

The project is co-funded by the Creative Europe Programme of the European Union, and we can be proud that, with a few other Finnish projects, the ANTI Festival was once again successful despite the tight international competition between large projects. Partners of the Future DiverCities project include pioneers in electronic art, such as BEK from Bergen, Public Art Lab from Berlin and Second Nature from Aix-en-Provence. With the help of their curatorial expertise, we will work even more with artists specialising in digital art, all the way from media art to electronic music.

Future DiverCities reaches towards the new also when it comes to discussing the future of artistic work and the livelihood gained from it. We believe the future is digital and that new audiences will be reached through the digital world and ecosystems that are only forming at the moment. During the project, one of our main challenges is to discuss how ephemeral art can be realized digitally and what kinds of digital dimensions it could have in the future that would increase its accessibility, expand audiences and also bring income to the artists.

These are big questions, but without large-scale challenges and brave openings, it’s not likely we will find innovative solutions. We believe that together with our project partners, who are all pioneers in their own fields, and artists, different audiences and heterogeneous audiences and participants we will find, if not solutions, then certainly openings that we cannot even begin to image now, at the start of the project.

Isn’t that a comforting perspective of the future?

Together and in co-operation, we are creating a future that is not only a dangerous image of where Europe is headed, but something so much better: something equal, multicultural and simultaneously democratic where all voices will be heard. Something we cannot even begin to imagine, but something we know is more than a utopia.

Join us on our four-year expedition!

The themes of the Future DiverCities project will be discussed soon again in Kuopio. ANTI, the Future DiverCities project and  Design Week Kuopio will organise an open discussion meeting on 27th April. Welcome!

In Kuopio, April 13th
Johanna Tuukkanen

Antye Greie-Ripatti & Johanna Tuukkanen - Photo: Pekka Mäkinen
Antye Greie-Ripatti & Johanna Tuukkanen – Photo: Pekka Mäkinen