Culture with Capital T: Turku and Tallinn Joined by the Baltic Sea
Tallinn and Turku share the title of European Capital of Culture on both sides of the Gulf of Finland: The rest of the world is watching with envy. Prior to Turku and Tallinn’s year in 2011, no other Capitals of Culture have shared so much of history, culture and values – much less a common sea. As the ice melts, fantasies of the Baltic Sea appear sharper to us with joint programmes bridging over the 170 km distance between the two old cities.
An examination of the Baltic Sea from various perspectives stands at the heart of Turku and Tallinn’s joint programmes. It is about history, culture, stories, environment, identity, future. There are nearly 20 projects altogether involving artists from both cities. Some of the projects are being funded by both foundations, some of them just by one foundation but still taking place in both locations and being created by people from Tallinn and Turku.
“The aim of the cooperation has always been to create networks of artists that get their creative impulse from 2011 and last well beyond that year” says Jaanus Mutli, board member of Tallinn 2011 foundation.
“The year 2011 will show Europe how Capitals of Culture can work together to make a difference for the common environment. Artists work on both Baltic Sea shores exploring the sea and expressing their concerns for its future through art, culture and actions,“ says Cay Sevón, CEO of the Turku 2011 Foundation.
Among the common programmes, you will find The Detour, a project capturing the perceptions of history on the level of both shared and individual memory of Estonians, Russians and Finns. On a more theatrical level, the Baltic Sea will see four of its cities connected in the New Baltic Drama 2011 competition, performing in both Tallinn and Turku, and eventually in neighbouring countries. MIM goes sustainable will bring the technological performance challenging waste of energy to Turku in May. Also sport and nature enthusiasts will be offered a unique opportunity to bring the two Capitals of Culture together by spanning from Tallinn to Turku for a 10-days kayak expedition in summer 2011. To close the warm season we will be thinking of the state of the Baltic Sea during the night of ancient bonfires in August.
Tallinn and Turku are also seizing the opportunity to offer a “double pack” of culture to visitors from afar by creating cultural trips that combine the best of both cities.
No wonder do the two cities want this close cooperation to continue beyond this special year. One of the most important objectives for both towns is to have a permanent impact on the cities and their residents, and to establish lasting operational models for the cities and between the cities. The grand opening to that is what the Gulf of Finland offers now, which is unprecedented cultural events to delight the locals and welcome guests from everywhere.
So if you want to see what it is all about, get on board the boat and join the capitals of culture journey!
Additional information and contacts:
tel. +358 44 907 5710
tel. +372 56 2011 18