Thursday, 14 February 2013

Jyväskylä: what if...Concert hall underwater?

My evening walk has taken me to Mattilanniemi campus by lake Jyväsjärvi where these strange lights pierce the frozen lake. What if... The long-planned concert hall had already been built in Jyväskylä. What if it was summer, not winter. What if the concert hall was underwater, not under ice - like it now seems to be? 
Kari Alonen is a local artist and sculptor who has created this work of art on the ice, using old skylights from the local health centre (that's why they have numbers on them). If I hadn't spotted a short newspaper article about this, I wouldn't have a clue of what it is about; it would be "just" a lighting installation.
Alonen has imagined what an underwater concert hall would look like in the winter, with the skylights popping out through the snow and ice.The concert hall has been planned in Jyväskylä for ages, but so far the project has always been postponed until later, due to lack of funding. Alonen jokingly proposed this as a cost-efficient alternative.
I recognize the metal wire ball as one of Alonen's previous works that has been on display here earlier as well. I start toying with the underwater concert hall idea but soon find that my feet are pretty firmly on the ground instead. How would you enter the underwater concert hall? How much water is there in this part of the lake? How big a concert hall would fit underwater right here?
The freshly fallen snow covers the skylights and they cast an eerie light on the ice. What if you could have a peek into the concert hall through the skylights through the windows when walking on the ice in February? Would it be possible to paddle over the concert hall with a kayak? Walk over it in knee-high water? Can't help thinking about Feet in the water (by Eva & Manu)! How clear is the lake water several meters deep in the lake - when looking through the windows of the concert hall, would you be able to watch the fish swim?
You can go on and on thinking what if... However, for now I'll look at this light installation as a work of art and not take it too deep.

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