Kokemäenjoki runs 121 km from its inland source to the Pori estuary before emptying into the Baltic Sea. The landscapes along the river valley and the identities and sense of community attached to them form the subject of Kokkeli, a two-year participatory cultural project. Culture mapping has revealed new information about the meanings attributed to the river and also about experiences of “river citizenship”. The exhibition presents five perspectives on the value of the landscapes and their conservation in the Kokemäenjoki area. It also showcases new research data.
The featured artists Jan Eerala, Mollu Heino, Henry Merimaa, Veijo Setälä and Titta Valla have all worked for a long time with themes involving water, rivers and the Kokemäenjoki landscape. The exhibition introduces a new strand to the history of the river. Through art the show updates the ecological and cultural layers in Pori and in the Satakunta region.
KOKKELI is a two-year art research project funded by the Kone Foundation. Its purpose is to develop methods for engaging locals in meaningful ways in the preservation of cultural environments as part of the project for joint development and planning of operating environments in the Kokemäenjoki river valley in the Satakunta region.
Cultural mapping was conducted in six different types of landscape areas, most of them rural districts characterised by agriculture, village life or a position on the urban fringe. A notable shared feature is an ongoing change in the cultural aspects of the community and the landscape. That change is reflected in the variability of the population and thereby in lifestyles, in the need to revive traditions and in the dialogue between new and fading cultural elements.
In cooperation with the Department of Landscape Studies at the University of Turku.
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Free entrence on Wednesdays from 6 to 8 pm