URB 20: Online Edition

The 21st edition of the annual festival goes mainly online this year.

  • 9.6.–14.6.2020
Tickets: free admission

URB Festival

URB festival’s 21st edition is arranged mainly online this year, due to coronavirus pandemic. The diverse programme includes video productions made for the festival, skateboarding movies, video art, artist talks and one physical event: an exhibition at culture centre Caisa.

URB is an annual street art and culture festival that presents the influence of ever-changing street art and youth culture on different forms of contemporary art. The festival is produced by Kiasma Theatre.


EGS – Telling Stories with Three Letters / mini documentary

New episodes available at URB website on Tue 9.–Thu 11.6. 10:00. Language: English, no subtitles. The videos are available from the each premiere to the end of the festival.

EGS (b. 1974) is one of the best-known Finnish graffiti artists. After leaving his mark on the cityscapes in dozens of different countries, the Helsinki-based artist recently focused on embracing more traditional forms of art making ranging from paintings to glass sculptures. His work can be seen on streets, galleries and museums worldwide. By varying the three letters of his tag, the artist modifies the classic graffiti calligraphy beyond recognition, and further, constructs his own lifelong travel journal using these peculiar abstract markings.

EGS – Telling Stories with Three Letters is a mini documentary made for the URB festival. In three parts, EGS is presenting his working history with three letters over 30 years in different locations and sites around the world. The mini documentary sheds light to EGS’s artistic background and thoughts, as well as delves the viewer to the creation process of couple of his works.

URB Talks / video series

New episodes available at URB website on Tue 9.–Thu 11.6. 14:00

URB festival invited six persons from different backgrounds to a one-on-one blind date. The idea of the encounters were to watch some video clips to provoke discussion about art, culture and all possible things that happens to pop into one’s mind. How the era of the corona virus has affected us? How same video can be interpreted so differently?

This three episode video series presents a compilation of these encounters and discussions bouncing between high and low. The pairs of the discussions are Roni Martin & Lola Lorenzo, Jamie MacDonald & Sophia Wekesa, and Ronja Kuoppamäki & Pie Kär.

The videos are filmed and edited by Teemu Kyytinen.

Watch full episodes

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Roni Martin and Lola Lorenzo
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Jamie MacDonald and Sophia Wekesa
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Pie Kär and Ronja Kuoppamäki

Tulva / video dance piece

Available at URB website on Thu 11.6. 12:00.

This particular piece observes the various dimensions of digitalization. Is the user of internet only a receiver, that is being dominated by the internet infrastructure, or are we in fact in control of our individual thoughts and decision making in today’s obsessive use of online data? The piece investigates the ways in which internet enables different capacities to shape and influence identities.

Two performers (Ainu Kyronseppa & Johan Hogsten) portray the energy of virtual reality through dance-, video- and light art. Uncharted waters lies ahead of us with the magnitude of internet. We may unconsciously forget to stop from time to time.

The visual wholeness of this performance helps to reflect life in the entity of the fast developing world.

The artists

Ainu Kyronseppa and Johan Hogsten are a performative artistic duet that mainly thrive in dance, yet their interest in other fields of art comes present when seeking for new experiences. ”We studied in the same highschool some years ago and have eversince come together on occasion to unite our forces in different projects”.

House of Disappointments / mini documentary

Available at URB website on Tue 9.6.at 14:00.

Wu Tsang: Into A Space of Love / video work

Online screenings on Tue 9.6. & Sat 13.6. at 19:00. Duration: 26min., language: English.

Into A Space Of Love is a short, magical-realist documentary that explores the legacies of house music that are rooted in New York black and brown underground culture.

Based primarily on real experiences such as those of black and Latino queer communities and the queer liberation movement, the work captures the history and legacy of New York house music in a mysterious documentary format. Transcending generations to show the New York nightlife of the past, present and future, Into A Space of Love portrays this realm as a place of love, pain and struggle.

Starring Kevin Aviance, Kia LaBeija with Taina Larot, Jeff Simmons, Shaun J Wright, and Venus X, Into A Space Of Love focuses on a cultural revolution that swept in with all the magnitude of the countercultural movement of the 1960s. This video explores the legacy of house music, with its roots in the underground black, brown and queer cultures of New York, and the culture of clubs, the main venue where it is featured.

Wu Tsang

Wu Tsang (born 1982) is a filmmaker, artist and performer currently based between New York and Berlin, whose work is concerned with hidden histories, marginalized narratives, and the act of performing itself.

Skate movies I

Online screening on Wed 10.6. at 18:00. 19:15 directors live stream discussion

Oona Markkanen & Ines Särkkä: What you did there was amazing (2019)

Women have always been skateboarding, but it is only in the last decade that a woman on a skateboard is no longer only a rare sight. What you did there was amazing is a documentary about skateboarding, narrated by women who skate. For these women skateboarding is more of a lifestyle than a hobby. It’s unavoidable to get bruises or open wounds but the high from a accomplishment is worth of it all.

However, in the end, skateboarding is more about community and expressing yourself freely, than anything else.

Duration: 35min.

Vantte Lindeavall: Utopia (2020)

Utopia is a story about the fleetingness of life in a world, where words don´t matter.

The main stage, the forecourt of Tampere Culture Center Laikku is portrayed through hazy scenes shot with a pinhole camera. Its nuanced life from early spring to late autumn creates a feeling of dreamy timelessness. Skateboarding scenes are located in different levels of urban environment and also, far from home.

Utopia is a skate film by Vantte Lindevall. It combines narrative styles of observational and poetic documentary with the typical fisheye lens aesthetics of skate videos.

The film is a story of longing and need for silence. Utopia of wordless co-existence.

The film is speechless. Duration: 31 min.

Skate movies II

Online screening on Fri 12.6. at 18:00.

Oona Markkanen & Ines Särkkä: What you did there was amazing (2019)

See the description above at Skate movies I.

Vantte Lindeavall: Abkhazia (2017)

Abkhazia is a documentary film about passionate skateboarders who come to question their own behavior and their relationship to non-skaters, as they record their adventure into a former Soviet holiday paradise, that has since been ravaged by a war of independence.

Abkhazia was premiered at the year 2017 Love & Anarchy -festival, and the same year was awarded the best documentary film at MIMPI film festival. The movie has been seen in Finland, England, Russia, Croatia, Brazil, Italy and Portugal.

Duration: 52 min., subtitles in English.

Meet the artist: Dancer-choreographer Benaji Mohamed / Ben Fury

Online event on Wed 10.6. at 12:00.

A dancer-choreographer Benaji Mohamed / Ben Fury tells about his work on an online interview. Ben Fury shall lead a series of workshops during fall 2020 and spring 2021, targeting to prepare a dance performance. The workshop is part of a 4-year EU project called BEPART.

Along with the interview will be seen a glimpse of a dance project Fury realized last year in Tunis for Dream City, Art Festival in City.

Ben Fury

Moroccan born Benaji Mohamed/Ben Fury established his foundation of dance in the underground scene of break dance in Brussels through the 80ies and 90ies. As a breakdancer he progressively worked on the development of floorwork, groove, style and powermoves. In 1998 he was absorbed by the contemporary dance scene and embarked on a journey that is still present today.


Elements of Vogue

9.6.–26.6. Culture centre Caisa (Kaikukatu 4 B). Opening hours: Mon–Fri 9–17, Sat & Sun closed.

VOGUING/VOGUE ballroom-culture has initiated and expanded as a movement within New York’s poc-/queer communities, and principally illustrates an self-expressive fusion of movement & fashion. In compliance with its name, it has attracted influences from Vogue -fashion journal as well as from genres of dance & acrobatics. It has functioned and keeps functioning today as a beneficial platform for sexual & gender identities, and most importantly offers a safe space in particular to those parts of queer communities of afro-american & latin origins.

In recent years, Roza Ahmad has documented the European based voguing-community. As a key function to the exhibition is to manifest various shapes & forms of queer. Roza wants to establish recognition to body-marginalisations & break the media portrayal of beauty standards & by this exhibit the voguing-culture with new perspectives to popular audiences. Brown & cultural diversity is also a key component to the exhibition’s overall theme.

Roza Coco Ninja

Roza Coco Ninja aka. Roza Ahmad is a versatile performer & artist, who is ackowledged as of being a member of the international House of Ninja collective. Her illustrations has been published in covers of C/O Berlin magazine in the release of July 2018 and in Zero.eu (ITA) online issue in 2018. Roza’s illustrations have also been exhibited in various major events such as the Move.unltd event in2019 and in Berlin’s ’So Extra Ball – Bread and Butter’ – festival in 2018. Last August in 2019, Roza had a personal exhibition in Flow festival’s sensational Pink Space project, which was curated by Taika Mannila & Fanni Suvila.

WEAR(E)ART by House of Disappointments

9.6.–26.6. Culture centre Caisa (Kaikukatu 4 B). Opening hours: Mon–Fri 9–17, Sat & Sun closed.

House of Disappointments is a creative club kid collective founded in spring 2017. It was born out of a need to create some color in gray everyday life. Founding members Joona Huotari, costume designer, Simo Landin, hairstylist and Jesse Virtanen, hairstylist, are all professionals of creative fields.

Their main goal is dress to impress and break norms of appearance, self-expression and gender roles in a funny but sometimes a bit provocative way. Fashion, pop culture, drag queens and other club kids of the world inspire House of Disappointments. Personality is important to House of Disappointments and most of the looks are self-made or altered from second hand clothes.

House of Disappointments is working mostly on clubbing scene. They have been competing also in Vogue Balls and won categories for example best dressed, best hair and bizarre, but in addition they have been working as stage hosts, in make-up workshop, hosts for private events and as stylists.

URB logo by Caracara collective

9.–14.6. Kiasma Theatre’s foyer, Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma. Opening hours: Tue–Sun 11–18, Mon closed.

Caracara collective made a URB festival logo of the orange peel collected from K-supermarket’s orange juice machine, needles and reed. The logo will be exhibited at Kiasma’s foyer.

Caracara collective

Caracara collective is a group of designers that focuses on creating spatial products, installations and artwork using natural materials made from local waste resources.

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