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Cool contrasts

Oulu2026 valo ja hahmo

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!

Programme Lines

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.

Dark Matters

No one has such an intimate relationship with light as us northerners. Acknowledging the dark and harvesting the light for health
and well-being.

Oulu Calling!

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.

Latest

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Solstice Festival 2024: Art program – Open Call

Solstice Festival 2024: Art program – Open Call

Solstice Festival invites artists to partake in a celebration of light and life in the mesmerizing landscapes of Rukatunturi. Solstice is a gathering for people who enjoy music, art and nature, preferably combined. It takes place during midsummer (20.-22.6.2024) in...

Artists for the first Sápmi Triennale announced

Artists for the first Sápmi Triennale announced

For the first few months of Oulu’s European Capital of Culture year 2026, the Oulu Art Museum will be transformed into a museum of Sámi art. Combining contemporary Sámi art and duodji, traditional Sámi handicrafts, Sápmi Triennale will be one of the main attractions....

Open call for young artists for the Delta Life Project

Open call for young artists for the Delta Life Project

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.

Oulu2026 is almost here!

Oulu2026 is almost here!

The Oulu2026 Capital of Culture year is just two years away! Who are you going to invite to the opening ceremony?