Oulu is the kingdom of great contrasts – positive, but also challenging. Contrasts such as the nightless nights of the midnight sun and sunless days in the heart of winter. Contrasts have the power both to connect and disconnect, but also to create something new.
Cool Contrasts is about rebalancing our communities. There is already a recognised European need to use culture as a means to help reduce health inequalities. Oulu2026 will work with our citizens and with European partners to develop cultural practices that promote positive engagement to re-balance these inequalities. People are literally dying of loneliness in parts of Europe, both in big cities and in struggling rural hinterlands.
Oulu2026 wants to help Europe to reconnect with itself, promoting community life and face-to-face connection and exploring mental wellbeing through sensitive and thoughtful projects.
How do we learn to better understand each other? What new and surprising connections can we create and nourish? We can listen, appreciate, be curious, supportive and interested in each other. Let’s celebrate our differences in the city of contrasts!
Each of the three programme themes include programme lines which enable us to group connected projects together to maximise synergy and impact.
Art <3 Tech
Every day, nearly three billion people use mobile technology developed in Oulu. The city has long been a pioneer in technology research, product development and start-ups – and now it wants to take over Art&Tech. The models used to produce the culture of the future will increasingly utilise a hybrid strategy, a combination of virtual and physical experiences.
No one has such an intimate relationship with light as us northerners. Acknowledging the dark and harvesting the light for health
Celebrating the city’s resilience and power of reinvention as an inspiration for the future. We want to explore our local identities through outsiders’ eyes, and be surprised by what we discover about ourselves.
Oulu August Festivals are looking for promising emerging artists from the Oulu2026 region for the documentary series “Artists Arise in the Delta” for the years 2024–2026. The open call lasts until the end of February 2024, and the selections will be made during March. Five artists/groups will be chosen based on the applications.
For the Oulu2026 stage, we are looking for fresh, diverse and forward-thinking artists from the Oulu region. The application period ends on 1 March.
The Oulu2026 Capital of Culture year is just two years away! Who are you going to invite to the opening ceremony?
FROZEN PEOPLE is a festival of electronic music, northern art and wintry style. The event takes place on the frozen sea at Nallikari (Oulu) on the 2nd of March 2024 from 14:00 to 22:00. This free-to-enter festival is produced by Oulu Urban Culture and is part of the cultural program of the Oulu2026 European Capital of Culture. The organizers are now looking for enthusiastic artists to implement the art program.
The sustainable event production guide has been published. The guide supports the responsible organization of events in the Oulu region.
Upeart, a Finnish public art professional, is involved in our cultural program with the “Joy from Urban contemporary art” -project, which produces mural artworks around the Oulu area. The locations for the murals are chosen by the residents of Oulu in annual votes,...
Tartu, one of the European Capitals of Culture in 2024, is looking for three young people aged 18–30 from the Oulu2026 region to volunteer between January 25 and February 13, 2024. The selected young people get to create a unique youth celebration on International...
Organizer Oulun kulttuurisäätiö sr Y-tunnus 3246820-6 Torikatu 18 1 krs., 90100 Oulu email@example.com Lottery You can participate in the lottery from November 1, 2023, to November 30, 2023. The lottery will be drawn every Monday among those who have participated in...
Glowember is coordinated by the Oulu Culture Foundation. The Glowember events are organized by various entities, including municipalities and associations. Some of the events are already well known, while others are being organized for the first time. The whole spectacle takes place over a broader area, as part of the journey toward the Cultural Capital Year in 2026.
The Tales of Tar route that can be experienced digitally on mobile devices around Oulu will open in November. The cultural history route consists of 10 fascinating short stories written by author Katariina Vuori. The stories are based on authentic locations, events...