"Global Equality" public art collection at the Väre building/Aalto University

 The ‘Global Equality’ art concept

Globality in the field of arts can be seen as a historic fact. In recent decades the global nomadic movement also in education and research has grown into new potentials, which creates a need for new identities. Public Art situated at a university can offer some views and questions for the global identity building. The artworks at the Väre building were selected under the rubric of Global Equality, which addresses and ties together two different themes: Art as a global phenomenon and the equality of people across continents, genders, cultures and ages.

The artists behind the art collection selected for Väre are a diverse group: men and women, experienced artists and also young talents. All artists have a connection to Aalto University as alumni, current students or former professors. In the context of art, design and architecture education and research, the art works will be part of the frame work for critical education and research.

The art works for Global Equality were selected by a process of sharing, co-creating and curating. We organised two separate art competitions: an open competition “Wall-Art” for all Aalto University students, and an invitational art competition. The winner of the student art competition, Kreutzstrasse by Gloria Lauterbach, has been installed on the outside wall near Väre and can be viewed from several windows. From the invited art competition two art works were commissioned for Väre cluster spaces: Insight by the artist duo Tommi Grönlund and Petteri Nisunen, and Lumen by Kirsi Kaulanen. The artworks in the project rooms were curated by means of suggestions and continuous discussions with staff and students from the School of Arts, Design and architecture. Artists: Marja Helander, Sasha Huber, Otto Karvonen, Lotta Mattila, Teemu Mäki, Silja Puranen, Perttu Saksa, Vidma Saymya, Kim Soohyun and Tapio Yli-Viikari.

The theme ‘Global Equality’ addresses serious and timely topics including questions of fear of change, uncertain sexuality, climate crisis and the refugee question. The works chosen also showcase a variety of materials and techniques, which reflects breadth of study and research fields of the School of Arts, Design and Architecture at Aalto University. The works of art pose questions of diversity while still suggesting that we are all connected. In the public art collection, there are also critical topics, which might be painful and problematic like questions of animal rights. Engaging and strengthening critical debate, as well as finding solutions for global issues, are at the core of University’s activities. 

One of the main ideas for displaying art at Väre is to provide pieces that create a durable and exciting environment while also leaving enough space for temporary exhibitions and events. This is particularly relevant for an institution where students and faculty produce art and exhibit their own work. The pieces of art at Väre also encourage all visitors and members of Aalto community to investigate what these art works are all about. Be brave and take a deeper look. Not all is what it seems at first glance!

PS. The art catalogue and the video launch will be 6.10.2018 4 pm at Väre. Be there!

Outi Turpeinen

Art Coordinator / Aalto University

More info HERE.

Images: Mikko Raskinen / Aalto University