May-June 2008, Luopioinen, Finland
Intervention with Finnish artist Piia Salmi
Exhibition House of Senses, Organized by Muodonmuutoksia, Finland
This was the original project of making jam and handling it as local currency, an idea, which I developed further in my project »TIME BANK« in 2010. Piia Salmi and I made jam with ten families at their homes and asked them to name each individual jar as they like. Exhibition visitors watched a video, which shows this naming process. Visitors then could choose a favorite one from the video. They received the telephone number of a jam owner in order to pick up the chosen jam by themselves.
We started this project by asking ourselves how local people could build a new kind network and explore the potential solidarity among the other people of the area. Large parts of Finland are lake regions. There are a lot of lakes between villages. The next village is often a few dozens km away. Without having a particular reason, people may not spontaneously visit the other side of their lake. Honestly, I had a stereotype of Finnish people being very shy and preferring to live in isolated surroundings. Some may die alone, deeply depressed, during the long winter.
I imagined it would be a big »task« to request them to call up unknown people, pass a number of lakes and drive through forests in order to pick up a jar. Contrary to my expectations, 72 people met new people and explored new routes to encounter each other.