25 sep

Panel discussion: The conditions of artist-run spaces in Finland and Russia

Presented by Supermarket – Stockholm Independent Art Fair in collaboration with the Finnish Institute in Stockholm

Tuesday September 25th, 15.00–17.00, followed by networking and mingle.
Finlandsinstitutet, Snickarbacken 4, 111 39 Stockholm.
RSVP by September 24th here.
The panel will be held in English.

SUPERMARKET and the Finnish Institute in Stockholm present a panel discussion on the conditions of contemporary artists’ initiatives in Finland and Russia. During the 2-hour session the panelists will discuss the situation of contemporary self-organised art scene in the two disparate, yet historically and culturally interconnected countries.

The broader culture-political problematics reflect in a smaller scale in the the conditions of the arts and culture sector. The existing frameworks for artists’ initiatives in Finland and Russia may be disparate in their funding and financial opportunities but share common patterns in terms of structure, applied processes and also visions and values. We will discuss some of these subjects with the invited panelists, all of whom have experience from different areas of the contemporary art sector.

Marina Pugina (curator, Perm, RU)
Timo Soppela (MUU, Helsinki, FI)
Marja Viitahuhta (Galleria Huuto, Helsinki, FI)
Moderated by Alice Máselníková (SUPERMARKET, Stockholm, SE)

The panel will revolve around the following topics:

  • Conditions of artists and artist-run spaces, funding support and professional opportunities in Russia and in Finland/Scandinavia
  • Collaborations and projects initiated between the two countries especially in the border area and in the peripheries
  • Differences and similarities in the approach of local audiences and their perception and interpretation of contemporary art forms
  • Relationship between institutional and non-institutional art scene

With the escalation of the East-West antagonism steadily fuelled by the media and politicians alike, it is essential to engage in a mutually interested discussion on the cultural and political situation in Russia and our relations to it. Geographically and historically, Finland and Russia share both common interests and dividing issues.

Shared projects and developed collaborations are vital for understanding the different situations of the art scenes in Scandinavia and Russia. In 2018, following the course of previous years, SUPERMARKET enhanced its focus on Russia and hosted three Russian artist-run galleries: Dom Gruzchika gallery from Perm, Gallery Ch9 from Murmansk and Elektrozavod gallery from Moscow. SUPERMARKET has been working to broaden its knowledge of Russian artists’ initiatives, expand its outreach and share the information with the public.

Marina Pugina (b.1992 in Perm, Russia) is a curator and art critic who lives and works in Perm. She graduated in Arts and Humanities from the Perm State University in 2015; studied at ArtPolitika School of Contemporary Art, Perm, in 2013; and the School of Art Journalism at PRO ARTE, Saint Petersburg, in 2014. She has worked at the Contemporary Art Department of Perm State Art Gallery since 2015 and writes on contemporary art, street art, and self-organised initiatives. In the last few years she has been active as an independent curator in the artist-run space ‘Dom Gruzchika’ in Perm, Russia. She received the EUNIC Russia 2018 curatorial residency and is hosted at Tensta Konsthall in Stockholm in September–October 2018.

Marja Viitahuhta (b.1979 in Tornio, Finland) is a Helsinki-based media artist and filmmaker. Her works range from films, performances and installations to photography and collage. She holds a BA degree in performance art from the Turku Polytechnic Arts Academy and an MFA degree from the Finnish Academy of Fine Arts. She has been awarded internationally at Cannes (Cinéfondation), Stuttgarter Filmwinter, Mediawave and L’Alternativa film festivals. Her early work ‘99 Years of My Life’ is in the collections of both MoMA (New York) and Kiasma Contemporary Museum of Art.

Timo Soppela (b.1965 in Kemijärvi, Finland) has been the director of the Artists’ Association MUU/MUU Gallery, Helsinki, since 2001. He graduated from the Institute of Fine Arts of Lahti, Finland, and the Warsaw Academy of Fine Arts, Poland. He has worked as a gallerist and art educator and in MUU he has organised hundreds of exhibitions and international events. Soppela is a member of the board of HIAP Helsinki International Artist Programme since 2015. He was invited to the jury of the International Short Film Festival Oberhausen 2018. MUU, together with its partners from northern Finland and Russia, is developing a mobile art platform to establish ongoing cooperation with the Russian partners.

Alice Máselníková is Czech curator, artist and editor based in Stockholm. She is the project manager of SUPERMARKET. She has curated a number of international projects and exchanges, e.g. as the guest curator at Umeå Art Academy, Sweden, Platform Stockholm, the Faculty of Art and Design J. E. Purkyně in Ústí nad Labem, Czech Republic or the Transfer North curator-in-residence in Murmansk, Russia; she has given lectures amongst other at the Arctic Art Forum in Archangelsk or the Barents Bird Festival in Murmansk. She holds an MA degree in Curating Art from Stockholm University.



Felicia Gränd, Press officer, Email: press@supermarketartfair.com,
Tel: +46 (0) 70 948 38 30

Elina Ylhäisi, Finnish Institute programme coordinator (culture),
Email: elina.ylhaisi@finlandsinstitutet.se, Tel: +46 (0) 76 948 00 09


The goal of Supermarket – Stockholm Independent Art Fair is to provide a showcase of artists’ initiatives from all over the world and to create opportunities for new networks on Swedish and international art scene. It is an art fair that strives to offer the visitor an experience rather than focusing on sales. Artist-run galleries that regularly display public exhibitions in their own spaces, and other artists’ initiatives that arrange exhibitions and events with invited artists can apply to exhibit at Supermarket.

Finnish Institute in Stockholm promotes knowledge of Finnish culture and society in Sweden, supports the culture of Sweden’s Finnish minority and facilitates cultural exchange between Finland and Sweden. We have a varied programme of exhibitions, concerts, seminars, films, author readings, Finnish language courses, etc. Our exhibition space Finlandsinstitutets galleri is dedicated to contemporary art.

Photo: Diana Agunbiade-Kolawole. Alexey Ilkaif, Supermarket 2018