In Our Coming Community, Valentina Karga addresses the future shape and shared values of a local community by creating a collective totem consisting of a ceramic sculpture and a video.
The project is a response to the current situation of global crises and financialized abstraction, where the lack of concrete values, of a tangible commons seems to crumble the foundations of modern western culture. The totem symbolises the community’s shared values, giving them a material form. It is a conceptual pillar that will break through the fear of change, and support ‘our coming community’.
The totem was created at the ceramics workshop of Saunabaari community centre, where the participants met to sculpt and glaze their own totem modules, and to share their values in video speeches. Also recorded on the video is the community centre’s sing-along group, performing the quintessential Finnish tango The Fabled Land whose lyrics long for a better world beyond the sea.
The totem was assembled for the first time in a preview event at the end of the residency, and the installation premiered in the Karga/Mazzi/La Jetée exhibition at the Maunula House in early 2017.
Special thanks to Heli Mattila (ceramics expert), Kalle Kuisma (videography) and Juuso Salmela (photogrammetry).
Siiri & Sanna Sipi
Saunabaari Community Centre
Maunulan Media Workshop
Jelle van der Beek/Puuguru
The residency project with Valentina Karga was produced by m-cult in September-October 2016, in context of the Collaborative Arts Partnership Programme, supported by the Creative Europe programme.