Urban Media in Liverpool and Helsinki

media facades festival 2010
Image: Media Facades Festival 2010 - Giants of the Hood

Two suburbs, Anfield in Liverpool and Kontula in Helsinki are connected as animated "dance battles" are projected onto building facades in both neighbourhoods.

In early 2010, The Finnish Institute in London initiated an artist-in-residence project between two community television channels; Tenantspin, the acclaimed Liverpool-based community internet television operated from within FACT (Foundation for Art and Creative Technology) and Helsinki-based m2hz. The two artist groups travelled to work in neighbourhoods in both cities and produced commissions to be screened in public spaces as part of the European Media Facades Festival 2010.

The unique project aimed to create new ways of seeing and being heard, exploring issues of loneliness and normality in urban environments. The residency started off in summer 2010, when two Tenantspin artists, Ian McNeil and Lucy Gonzales travelled to Helsinki to work on a project about citizenship and reclaiming media in collaboration with m2hz, the m-cult centre for new media culture, and community groups in the Kontula neighbourhood.

In late September 2010, the Finnish participants travelled to Liverpool for a short production residency. The participating artists are Sini Haapalinna, Markku Nousiainen, Pia Lindy and Matti Niinimäki. They work with local groups on their project Giants of the Hoods, an interactive street performance influenced by guerrilla art. In the project, local residents create dance battles between animated characters representing people of the neighbourhood. The battles are projected onto nearby buildings.

The exchange contributed to Media Facades 2010, a European festival of media art and urban media which took over public space in 7 European cities - Berlin, Brussels, Budapest, Helsinki, Linz, Liverpool and Madrid - between 27 August and 3 October, 2010. The results of both mini residencies could be seen on urban screens as part of the festival.

Image: Giants of the Hoods at the Media Facades Festival 2010 in Liverpool

Media Facades Festival 2010, 27 August - 3 October 2010

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