You might not think, but Finland is flourishing with urban art. Local and international artists are gathering to transform Helsinki’s historic neighborhoods into a colorful oasis. Recently, the US-based artist Pat Perry joined Fintan Magee (Australia) and Apolo Torres (Brazil) in the city for the second edition of the UPEART urban art festival. A project that included a massive installation at Kontulankaari 11, a strip of mural-walls along three 8-storey buildings.
Located at the corner of the 8-story complex on Kontulankaari 11 is Pat Perry’s new and ingenious mural. It presents two men hugging atop a large pile of wrecked cars and pick-up trucks parts. In the distance we see additional piles of garbage that look like and insinuates this moment is taking place in a junk-yard. It’s a powerful and touching mural of people set in a grimy and dilapidated background to juxtapose a pure idyllic setting of lakes and forests. An interesting contrast that the artist leaves open to interpretation that also makes a beautiful addition to the festival.
Born in Michigan, Pat Perry is an artist that bases his work and illustrations on subtle details that reveal everyday encounters one might pass by and not think twice about. He brilliantly portrays unique and confusingly accurate observations to the surrounding world. As a prolific creator, many of his pictorials are inspired by his love for travel, experiencing new cultures and what he’s encountered along the way. A vital part of his process is the dedication to draw and paint on a daily basis. Which as an adventurer, he continues to cultivate spectacular imagery with his keen perspective.
UPEA is organized by the Finnish street art association and has become Finland’s largest annual street-art event. For the second edition of the multi-city Street Art Festival, UPEA17 has invited local and international artists to paint twenty large-scale murals in thirteen different Finnish cities.
The murals at Kontulankaari in Helsinki are the biggest in the series of artworks created during the festival. UPEA17’s head curator, Jorgos Fanaris believes that they will become a tourist attraction for the city, once photos of the completed walls spread globally through social media.
Images by Anna Vlasoff and Vinny Cornelli