Kati Immonen and Minna Maija Lappalainen, have artistically attacked the electricity cabinets with their own artwork in the city centre with the help of Turku artists' association and the local energy supplier, Turun Energia. My walk's first stops are found at the corner of Puolalankatu and Yliopistonkatu street (the latter is the main pedestrian / shopping street); instead of the dull grey, cabinets are covered with photos of gorgeous green tiles, red bricks that hide a secret balcony
On the left of the granite steps leading to the museum there is a dog-covered electricity cabinet. Supposedly, each of them frequent this very park. What a lovely wallpaper style and wonderful dogs! But where is the other electricity cabinet? I'm sure there were to be two? I walk round the park, nothing... And step into the museum to ask where the other art cabinet could be. The first person I meet has no clue what I'm talking about, but the ticket office guy kindly googles the BOX web page for me. Silly me! There are actually two separate electricity cabinets right next to each other, and each of them is an individual work of art... Two in one...
As a consolation, I take a little break at the museum's little café. The smell of the fresh handmade cinnamon roll is far too temptating... When I look out of the window, there's no snow, but the window pane is decorated with a traditional giant snowflake made of white paper. Mmm, should I take a sheet of paper and scissors and make some for Xmas as well?
I find the next BOX artwork when descending the Aurakatu street, right at the corner of the market square and almost next to the old Orthodox church. Don't forget to look also at the top of the electricity cabinet! University of Turku, founded in 1920, was originally right here, and gave its name to the street (yliopisto = university), but the old building - that housed hotel Phoenix before the scholars entered - was torn down in 1959. The black and white photographs may bring back memories to the locals both in this corner, and in the next one as well
because these photographs show what Turku market square and its surroundings really looked like some decades ago. The corner of Yliopistonkatu and Kauppiaskatu street has also changed along the years, as you can see when you walk round the cabinets.
Paavo Nurmi, the most famous Flying Finn, a Turku-born record-breaking track and field athlete.
This becomes apparent when I try to find a BOX on the other side of the river, next to the city theatre. Perhaps I just miss it, or maybe I don't? I wonder if this grey electricity cabinet has featured some art on it at some point? Or maybe not, hard to tell. Anyway, these grey or green electricity cabinets seem more and more dull without the artwork!
BOX is attempting to make ordinary, dull objects more appealing and at the same time more noticeable. It works.
It is hard to tell how many Turku citizens have actually noticed that something along their regular walking route has changed, but I certainly hope they have, or will do that, on a very dull or beautiful day, when the sun shines from the right angle. I'm so glad these artistic electricity cabinets will remain even after the end of 2011 when Turku hands over its title as one of the two European capitals of culture.
I haven't quite managed to find all the 25 electricity cabinets but that's ok. It's time to focus on other than square shapes for a while. A beautiful round shape, perhaps? A perfect latte with a velvety taste at Cafe Art is a great ending to a little artistic walk.