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Finavia introduces a media art cinema at Helsinki Airport

For the next six months, passengers at Helsinki Airport will have the opportunity to see works by Finnish media artists at the airport's ArtCinema. The art cinema is part of the Art Port concept that Finavia launched in the World Design Capital year.

The foundation of Finavia's art concept is to offer passengers surprising new services that function as a stopping point in the hectic airport milieu. This is also the goal of ArtCinema. The works of art whisk the visitors off to another world.

"Passengers seem to appreciate this kind of airport experience. In the passengers' minds, this is one way that Helsinki Airport differentiates itself from competing transit airports. Furthermore, it works to improve passenger satisfaction," says Airport Director Ville Haapasaari.

Mr Haapasaari describes how pictures and stories about the art works and exhibition at Helsinki Airport have been featured in numerous blogs and magazines articles all over the world. A unique concept, the airport's dedication to art is a subject of global interest.

For Finavia, the Art Port concept is also part of its corporate responsibility. It is an excellent way of presenting Finnish expertise and offering artists the opportunity to get Finnish and international visibility for their works.

"We are happy to acknowledge the participation of major Finnish companies in the art projects and in supporting outstanding exhibitions." The sponsors of ArtCinema are Pro Av Art, AV-arkki and Stockmann.

Anna Forsman, curator of the ArtCinema media art exhibition, says that the general public may not be very familiar with media art. Passengers at the airport come from different cultures and settings. Many of them have had no previous contact with media art, which uses digital communication technologies, often in combination with other forms of art, such as film, music, video, installation, theatre or performance art.

Internationally, many of the best known Finnish contemporary artists work with media art. Starting in October, outstanding Finnish media art will be shown in the international setting of Helsinki Airport.

The airport will be exhibiting monthly thematic compilations of outstanding Finnish media artists through the numerous works shown in ArtCinema over a period of six months. The works and themes will change regularly.

"Enter the red interior of ArtCinema. Take a seat and allow media art to steer your mind to another world. Return with a refreshed mind, and enjoy your flight," Forsman says.

The first theme of the exhibition explores the Finnish people's relationship with nature. First out in Art Cinema are A Finnish Fable 2011 by Niina Suominen, Lau Nau: Valolle by Sami Sänpäkkilä, Smile of Mona Lisa by Alli Savolainen, Contrapuntal – Sawdust Theme by Jani Ruscica, Embarkation by Sini Pelkki and Rovaniemi 200704 Edit by Samuli Alapuranen.

Located at gate 37, the ArtCinema is open to all passengers. The video works are displayed non-stop in the Art Gallery room.

Finavia's art concept also includes other domestic airports. The latest acquisition, in cooperation with the Veljekset Gröndahlin Säätiö foundation, was Aviator Solaris by Stefan Lindfors. Placed in Vaasa, the sculpture was unveiled on 25 September.

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