Finland’s multi-city street art festival UPEA was held for the second year in September 2017. UPEA invites the most talented artists from all over the world to create more than 20 large scale murals in 13 different Finnish cities. Following its first edition success in 2016, the event further added to Finland’s festival scene this year.
The UPEA Street Art Festival is organized by the street art association Upeart. It started on Friday 1st of September and finished by the end of September. UPEA aims to share the joy and diversity of street art across Finland and highlights the value of the art form. Large scale mural art was rarely seen in Finnish cities before the introduction of this festival. Thus, UPEA’s goal is to give life and color to the bare facades with mural art by renowned street artists and bring the art out of museums to the public. It is the first street art festival in Finland that invites foreign artists to create permanent street art across Finnish cities.
The first edition of UPEA Street Art Festival had selected some of the most prominent artists from the street art scene in Finland and established names from abroad, such as Italian artist Tellas, Swedish duo Graffitisthlm, Australian artist Guido van Helten, Bulgarian duo Arsek & Erase, Swedish artist Ola Kalnins, Indonesian artist WD, U.S. artist Andrew Hem and Finnish artists Kim Somervuori and Teemu Mäenpää.
Artists create an imposing and versatile series of walls forming the largest mural projects ever seen in Finland. Being the only nationwide and by far the biggest street art event in the country, UPEA’s success continues for the second year with more local and international artists joining the event. The 2017 festival witnessed the rise of more gigantic and colorful murals by prominent artists across several cities in Finland.
List of UPEA17 special projects and their respective locations:
- Guido van Helten, Hämeenlinna – Highest mural in the Nordic countries, 56 m high double silo (Kantola silos)
- Fintan Magee, Apolo Torres, & Pat Perry, Helsinki – Massive side by side triple 8’s in Kontula suburb
- Rustam Qbic, Sipoo – Russian artist painting the whole house
- Jani Leinonen, Hyvinkää – Famous Finnish artist painting 300m2 installation-mural
Other big UPEA17 pieces produced around Finland:
- Andrea Wan, Rovaniemi
- Artez, Espoo
- Dulk, Espoo
- Eero Lampinen, Kemi
- Jussi TwoSeven, Turku
- Messy Desk, Lahti
- Millo, Jyväskylä
- Onur, Jyväskylä
- Ricky Lee Gordon, Vaasa
- Roberto Ciredz, Lahti
- Smug, Kotka
- Telmo Miel, Joensuu
- Vesod, Turku
- Wasp Elder, Turku
- Teemu Mäenpää, Espoo