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Radio in the Rain

8 degrees, rain, wind gusts at 37 km/h: A perfect day to make radio outside next to a river and a pine tree! The air… was… wet!

Scheduled for today at 12 was the “Air Nets” performance by the artist Inari Virmakoski at the Jakkukylä suspension bridge some 5 km away.  We decided to split up: Ms Schaffner would stay at the station, watching the weather and tending guests and sound art works; Ms Friedrich would go, see the performance and report via telephone into the radio mic.

Radio guest of the day was Kai, who punctually appeared at 11:30. Offering him a glass of cold water seemed somehow superfluous, and we started our talk with a pronunciation exercise of his surname: LATVALEHTO. (I remember him telling me a much much longer version of this one which I looked up from the internet.) Kai Latvalehto knows the region well, having moved  over from Sweden to the region of Ii at the age of 13.

We talked about the weather, climate change (“Black Christmas” even in the North in 7 out of 10 years) and his work as a project manager of the Kripa-project/Northern AiR.

The Kripa project aims to create permanent supporting structures for the field and to increase the international competence for the local cultural actors in Ostrobotnia. It is a part of the Rural Development Programme for Mainland Finland, funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development. Currently there exist six residency location, namely in Ii, Kuusamo, Hailuoto, Raahe, Oulu and Kärsämäki.

I asked for the website, and here it is: https://www.northernair.fi/en/

Shortly after he left, the phone rang. There was Tina reporting about the preparations of Inari’s performance: constant drizzle of rain, people with umbrellas is various colors, the curators shepherding the artloving crowd of ca. 30 people, a bridge spanning the river, a camera team on location… and amidth it, dressed in a shining yellow rain coat, the most wonderful looking artist, holding a mass of white material in her arms.

From the bridge itself “Air Nets” were dangling down and dancing in the rain gusts… just like giant “Jelly fish”, Tina reported.

The connection broke and kept on breaking during the telephone transmission. In between, the following works from the open call were presented:

  • Joan Schumann: Shimmer & Loop
  • The Square Root of Negative Two: Vapor
  • Sebastian Pafundo: Gûlgaltâ = Calvariae = Calvario.
  • Richard Zeiss: It’s a beautiful rain
    And the first episode of
  • TzuHuan_Lin_How’s the Weather ep1-4: Bad Weather in Puerto Rico

By the time Ms Friedrich reappeared from the expedition, I was thoroughly frozen over. And she too. The station was packed into the box, the ‘air of Ii’ microphones activated and off we went in search for some hot hot hot cups of tea at the Kulturikauppila.

This post is also available in: German