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Category Archives: Arabia Street Festival
Arabia Street Festival 2012 was only a part of a process. It’s one milestone on the road towards new, even more fantastic events. Everything we did, slip-ups and victories, all was a part of a learning experience. That’s why it’s important to have a thorough sit-down afterwards. What was done well, what didn’t work?
I took part in a joint meeting of all Spirit of Artova initiatives as the representative of Arabia Street Festival at the end of September. Janne Kareinen, the project leader, asked me a question that went something like this: “The Arabia Street Festival working group utilized a democratic decision-making model. How did that work out, in your opinion?” A bit confused, I waded back in my memories to last spring and answered: “Not very well.”
Afterwards I spent some time thinking about my answer and the reasons behind it. Working in a group – particularly with the small core group – was fun, straightforward, open and effortless. I’d say we conducted our business very democratically indeed and everyone present had a say in how things were done. What I mean is that everyone had and used opportunities to speak their mind nobody dictated what people should do. So you can say that the democratic decision-making was a success.
On my second to last day at work here at The Spirit of Artova I had the pleasure to chat with Taneli Kainulainen, the chief producer of Arabia Street Festival. Taneli was in the production team last year as well when a group of Metropolia students of cultural management produced the event as a part of their studies. “I play in a street band called Hermanni Turkki, and it came naturally to me to take responsibility for the street music area. I meant to do the same thing this year but somehow I finally found myself as the chief producer. This has been my first event production, so I’ve learned a lot along the way, and it feels like I was studying the things I was doing as I was doing them but everything worked out well in the end.”
The power of volunteering is in the energy that is created when motivated people get together to work for a common cause. These people share an idea or a theme, a source of inspiration or the joy of knowhow. Sometimes they just want to have fun without any greater uplifting, turn the everyday into a celebration just because, like was done in the Big Recycling Event and the parties of Kallioliike.
Arabia Street Festival 2012 has been packed away for winter. The realities of my personal life required my attendance away from the event production just before the festival, and I didn’t get back until the 14th of May; just in time to help the others carry away the last things, roll up banderols and clean up Kääntöpaikka. Everything ran smoothly in my absence; there were a number of committed people making everything happen, and when I asked to hear how everybody felt about the festival, I got the impression that it had gone very well indeed. There were approximately six thousand (6000!) visitors, you could hardly move in Intiankatu, and the visitors, organisers and artists had a good time. (more…)
In the morning, I waited. I didn’t want to open my eyes, I was afraid we’d have bad weather. Finally, I took the plunge. The sun is shining and the sky is blue! THE PERFECT FESTIVAL WEATHER!
Of course, the rain and the hellish wind started up conveniently around noon when the festival started. When the first people came, I realized there was nothing more I could do. The thing for which we’ve worked for three months starts now. It’s time to sit back and look around in wonder.
Taneli did it again. A veritable feat. This time it’s about a wall. Iittala’s old paint warehouse, which is being assessed for condemnation, is right next to the festival area. Now it will be transformed into the canvas of the graffiti artist Otto Maja and the Nimi collective. The pallid yellow of the wall will turn into a giant mural! That’s insane!
“In the initial stages of the project, I had no idea I’d sit down with Iittala Group marketing crew and quote the district architect’s opinion of how tearing down the building would affect the city façade committee.”
That I can believe because the idea of painting the storage house came up when the project was already in full swing – it was the result of a few crazy suggestions people just put out there. “Why not,” we started to ask. It doesn’t hurt to ask.
Finlayson Arabia – Saara
Oljenkorsi – Saara
Visibility with WDC
- big wall will be painted entirely
- we need 50 euros –> Janne
- inform the police
- backpack mail
- single-family home association
- Arabia’s logo
The production team of Arabia Street Festival met last week at the community centre Kääntöpaikka. We adopted a new policy that involves inviting only the core production people to the production meetings, by which we hope to keep the focus on the big picture. We want to avoid getting tangled up in details. After the meeting, people seemed to be happy about how much we were able to achieve.
We clarified the responsibilities for the dance and music venues by assigning each to a specific person. We have a great production team and the event, which at first seemed unconcentrated and scattered, is now taking shape. Clarity and simplicity has been emphasised in the design of the website and I love the result. The site looks good and it’s easier than last year to find what you’re looking for (or, well, it WILL be when we get around updating the content ). Information about all matters productional, confirmed performers, meeting memos, all that can be found in the wiki-based intranet, neatly categorised.
The production team of Arabia Street Festival met last week at Kääntöpaikka. In order to avoid the conversations being muddled with excessive attention to details and to keep the focus on larger entities, we thought it best to restrict the participants in the team meetings to the key people of the production process. After the meeting, people seemed to be pleased to see how many things were settled.