Post Maker Camp Vihti

Category: Expositions
Collaborators: Koelse, Cirkulacija 2, Pixelache, Kinga Kosłowska, Christiana Bissett

Post Maker Camp Vihti cover picture

The second part in Post Maker Camp series, a media art exchange between Koelse and Cirkulacija 2, held in Future Lake - Hiidenvesi Centre for Art, Research & Design and supported and co-produced by Pixelache. 11 participants spent a week together in remote location, exploring the title of post maker by producing art objects, performances and music.

Initiated by me and later involving quite many people in the production, the first Post Maker Camp was held in Ljubljana, Slovenia in May 2018. There Cirkulacija 2 hosted Koelse, which resulted in a show called A Pit of Koelse - Sublimation of Sweat. The Post Maker Camps were from beginning on agreed to be an exchange program, and so Koelse had to honor of hosting Cirkulacija 2 in Finland in October. As Koelse studio in Vallila is not spacious enough to provide for such an event, the October camp was organized in the Future Lake Center in Vihti, ran by Tapio Mäkelä, a long time Pixelache collaborator. Post Maker camp was the first event of its size to be held in Future Lake.

The Ljubljana camp had been based on co-operation between Koelse and Cirkulacija 2. In Vihti, we kept that baseline but mixed it up somewhat by publishing an open call for “apprentices”. The goal was to import fresh ideas, enable artists meeting each other and, hopefully, provide some exciting time for everybody. To my delight, we actually got more applications than we had open positions. After difficult choice, we selected Christiana Bissett and Kinga Kosłowska to join us.

The camp activities were not carefully planned beforehand. The process was allowed to flow quite freely during the week. Eventually, the camp converged on a couple of parallel streams. Quite many of them actually: Some advanced sonic and kinematic objects that Cirkulacija 2 were already building before the camp started; a sound installation buoy; a one person raft to be used for fish god worship; a “post maker flag”, a continuation of Koelse’s earlier plunge into the world of heraldic art; paranormal technology in form of telepathy practice aids; electronically enhanced dowsing. And finally, musical pieces based on field recordings and autonomous sensory meridian response experiments.

The title for the camp evolved to Post maker organism. The idea was that the participants were losing their individuality and merging into a greater whole, functioning as separate organs of a greater whole whose purpose and goals were unknown. Even if an organ could not, from its limited viewpoint, perceive its own function, all were considered equally important and indeed necessary.

On the last night in Vihti, differnet tracks were arranged into a camp closing event. The event, also titled Post maker organism, was held in Merikerho in Helsinki. Merikerho was chosen since both Future Lake and Merikerho are ran by Tapio, who in this way hosted the camp from the beginning to the end. As Merikerho is situated on a boat, the waterborne performances were easy to situate right next to it on the Baltic sea. The other performative situations, workshops and art objects were put inside the club in the boat’s cargo hold. The night concluded with three gigs by the camp participants followed by everybody playing together.

To develop the concept of post maker beyond the free flowing artistic process described above, we had Aku Seppälä (who happens to my cousin) present as a “mediator”. The mediator’s role was to take more intellectual, journalistic stance on the post maker question, as opposed to the artists who were let to concentrate on their work, whichever way it took. He interviewed the participants and observed the proceedings, collecting material for a podcast about the camp. The podcast is to be aired on Korppiradio. You can also listen to it right here.

Post Maker Podcast