Mikkeli is a town of 55 000 people in Eastern Finland. St Michel in Swedish, the town was named after Archangel Michael. Although some of the oldest public artworks in Finland can be found in Mikkeli in the form or of rock paintings, today we are focusing on the relationship the city has to contemporary public art.
During 2017, our task in a collaborative project with the city of Mikkeli is to create guidelines for future public art projects in the form of a public art program. Common guidelines that connect different parts of the city administration will help in the production of high quality public art projects - be it in the form of monuments, light art, temporary snow sculptures during winter, murals, or sound art - in a flexible way. At the same time, information about public art will be made more readily available to the public and different organisations active in the field of public art in the area.
How could the locals have their say more easily, when it comes to choosing public artworks to their neighbourhood?
One of the goals of the project is also to study new ways for public participation in the processes of choosing and producing public artworks. How could the locals have their say more easily, when it comes to choosing public artworks to their neighbourhood? Different methods for participation will be tested both on site, outside in two different locations and in social media.
The project is done in collaboration with the planning department, cultural department, and the Mikkeli art museum, and local independent cultural organisations. The project is coordinated by Public Art Agency Finland, using the expertise our whole staff including Maija Kovari as the leader of the project, and Saara Piispa, Karoliina Paappa and Johanna Havimäki as specialists in each their own field. You can follow the development of the project (in Finnish) at the city's website: www.mikkeli.fi/julkinentaide, and in the social media channels of the city of Mikkeli.