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PeliPoikilo Game Art Exhibition
The art museum Poikilo in Kouvola will be filled with games in the Autumn of 2022. The exhibition will offer a wide range of new experiences for all visitors, but especially for those whom the games as an artform and games in general is still unknown and a lot of “oohhss” and aahhhs” will be experienced. The pieces exhibited ponder humanity, society and the universe, additionally strong, experimental and perhaps even entertaining pieces will be shown. Physical installations and strong statements in the form of board games are present alongside digital games.
The exhibition is curated by a workgroup consisting of experts in the fields of arts and games, whose chairman is the regional game artist from the Arts Promotion Center (Taike) Jaakko Kemppainen. Other members of the curating team are performing artist and trainer Harold Hejazi, PhD researcher Marleena Huuhka, the Intendant of Poikilo Museums Mari Lehtosalo and installation artist and designer Nova Saarinen.
Poikilo Museums' Grand Exhibition 2022
PeliPoikilo Game Art Exhibition
Opening of the exhibition in September:
The exhibition's curation team:
Jaakko Kemppainen is a game designer, who currently works as the Regional Artist of Games as art at Arts Promotion Centre Finland. He has worked with games for 20 years, designing, programming, producing, teaching and researching them, among other things. He has master’s degrees in digital culture (Jyväskylä) and game design and production (Aalto).
He is interested in the deeper meaning of player’s actions and the ways the games can evoke emotions in players through gameplay. As a gamer and professional he is an explorer, going into new and exciting directions. This has led to making SMS-controlled TV games, or designing virtual reality games before proper consumer level devices were available.
Mari Lehtosalo graduated with a master's degree in philosophy from the University of Jyväskylä with a major in art history. She works as a curator at the Poikilo Museums in Kouvola, and is responsible for operating exhibitions at the Kouvola Art Museum. The Poikilo Museums consist of the Kouvola Art Museum, the Kouvola City Museum, the Kouta Gallery and the Poikilo Gallery. The exhibitions at the Kouvola Art Museum focus on the presentation of contemporary art. One of the priorities is to showcase the work of local artists.
Since 2015, Lehtosalo has worked at the Kouvola Art Museum as an amanuensis and later as a curator. In collaboration with the museum director, she implements the exhibition program and vision of the Kouvola Art Museum. The Art Museum's program includes three changing exhibitions each year. Lehtosalo curates and produces the contents of the exhibitions and is responsible for taking the exhibition projects forward.
Harold Hejazi is a live artist, educator, and game designer from Vancouver Island, Canada. His practice focuses on creating games and participatory performances in collaboration with the educational departments of museums and art galleries. These games provide public programming that encourages alternative ways of engaging with art. In 2017, Hejazi moved to Finland to further explore this museum-game practice within the Theatre Academy’s Live Art and Performance Studies MA programme. In recent years, Hejazi has worked with museums such as Ateneum and Kiasma and has contributed game performances to various exhibitions and events within the Nordic countries.
Nova Saarinen is an interactive media artist, designer and educator from Finland. Their work aims to evoke experiences of connection and disconnection in the viewer by using interaction between the viewer and the work of art as a form of expression in itself. After spending most of their career abroad, Saarinen returned to Finland in 2018 to expand their practice into spatial installation art, through Aalto University's New Media Design and Production MA programme. They have continued their design practice in the field of digital media, currently in the role of a Senior Service and UX Designer at Eficode, as well as a lecturer at Eesti Kunstiakadeemia.
Marleena Huuhka holds a MA in Theatre and Drama Research. She is currently working as a doctoral researcher in the Centre for Practice as Research in Theatre, Tampere University, Finland. Her PhD thesis examines video games as places of performative resistance and searches for new counterplay practices.