VAFT: Politics, Emotion and Everyday Life Explored Through Video Art

Words by Sara Jaakonmäki

Keep up-to-date with the full VAFT programme at:
VAFT’s official Facebook event page

All VAFT events are free-of-charge and open to all members of the public.

Between the 17th and 21st of May the warehouses at Vanha Suurtori (the Great Old Square) in Turku will be filled with fresh and fascinating moving images, as Video Art Festival Turku (VAFT) takes place for the second time. In addition to the video art exhibition at the warehouses, VAFT offers a diverse programme in various locations across the city center, including internationally curated screenings, live gigs with an audiovisual touch, and an animation workshop.

International, thought-provoking and affective – these are few of the words that can be used to describe the second edition of VAFT. From nearly 300 entries from around the world, 14 artworks have been selected for the exhibition through a careful curation by the Finnish media artist Salla Tykkä.

This year’s festival will feature a strong emphasis on political and societal aspects. It will introduce some strikingly forceful video art works- some of which are captivating in their visuality, some in their intense stories and powerful themes.

The five-day festival kicks off with an opening event on Wednesday the 17th. From Thursday to Sunday the exhibition will be open daily. The diverse programme starts with a moving animation workshop on Thursday afternoon, being held in collaboration with Turku Animated Film Festival.

Friday and Saturday nights will be spiced up with audiovisual live gigs. What the VAFT?! in Dynamo nightclub will present three Turku-based bands on Friday, while on Saturday evening another set of live performances- accompanied by a short film screening- will take place at Kirjakahvila’s Videotykking! event.

VAFT also provides some culinary experiences on Saturday, as the festival takes part in Restaurant Day with a vegan food stand.

During the festival weekend, VAFT presents two screenings curated by international guest artists. On Saturday, the Berlin-based video artist Clemens Wilhelm brings his travelling video art festival GREENER ON THE OTHER SIDE to B-galleria. These featured art works reflect on the globalised generation and views of the contemporary world.

On Sunday, B-galleria will be filled with contemporary African video art. The screening is curated by Tobi Ayedadjou, the artistic director of the VIDEONOMAD project. The festival culminates later on Sunday with an artist talk at B-galleria. Here Wilhelm and Ayedadjou will be joined by other artists from the VAFT 2017 exhibition to discuss the process of making video art, as well as the position of being an artist in their home countries.


VAFT Exhibition Opening, Wednesday 18.00-21.00 (Vanha Suurtori warehouses, Luostarin Välikatu)

VAFT Opening After Party, Wednesday from 21.00 (Bar Ö, Linnankatu 7)

VAFT Exhibition, Thursday – Sunday 11.00-19.00 (Vanha Suurtori warehouses, Luostarin Välikatu)

What the VAFT?! club, Friday 20.30-23.30 (Dynamo, Linnankatu 7)

GREENER ON THE OTHER SIDE screening, Saturday 15.00-17.00 (B-galleria,
Aninkaistenkatu 5)

Videotykking! club, Saturday 20.00-00.00 (Kirjakahvila, Vanha Suurtori 3)

VIDEONOMAD screening, Sunday 15.00-16.00 (B-galleria, Aninkaistenkatu 5)

Artist Talk, Sunday 16.00-17.00 (B-galleria, Aninkaistenkatu 5)

Still from Hinni Huttunen & Jemina Lindholm: Resistance, 2016. This video art piece will be featured in the VAFT 2017 exhibition.
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