Classics Updated with Youth Culture

[WED MAY 10; B10; ’Klassikot päivittyivät nuorten maailmaan’, Vanessa Valkama]


The group responsible for the planning and painting of the five wall paintings placed on the outside wall of the Goodman shopping center was instructed by visual artists Minttu Saarinen and Mikko Myöhänen. Of the youths participating in the project, Julia Heinonen, Laura Forsberg, Ihab Al Tai, and Jesse Niemi were present at the reveal of the artwork. PHOTO: Pekka Rautiainen


* The wall painting depicts the 100-year-old Finland through the eyes of the young.


There is now a giant series of wall paintings adorning the outside wall of the shopping center Goodman. The almost 18 meters long artwork features modern comic book characters, children’s programs, and video games placed into classical paintings.

During this Spring, 14 youths under 29 years participated in planning and painting the piece of art. The wall painting explores what Finland journey through the century looks like through the eyes of the young.

– We started with the history of Finland. We updated classical paintings of the Finnish golden age of art (1880-1910) with characters from children’s and youth culture, says Mikko Myöhänen, who was one of the two artists instructing the youths.

For example, in the 1886 painting Taistelevat metsot (Fighting Capercaillies) by Ferdinand von Wright, one of the birds has been replaced with an Angry Bird.

The wall painting series remains on the wall for at least the rest of the year. The artwork is part of the Suomi 100 program, which emphasizes hearing out children and the young.

The purpose of the project was to give the participating youths an idea of the work that goes into the finished work of art. The art project is part of Hämeenlinna city’s Toimi! Project, which helps organize meaningful activities to go with making decisions about work and education to young adults.

According to Myöhänen, the youths in the project were so talented that the instructors had little left to do.

– In most projects of this kind, the instructors are worried how it’s going to go and how much they’ll have to do by themselves. In this project, we had such talented youngsters that instructors were left with nothing to do.


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