The Arctic region is changing rapidly. On the one hand, ecological, cultural, social and economical changes pose challenges for well-being and sustainable development and on the other hand, some of the changes also create new possibilities. In the Arctic Arts Summit 2019 the challenges and circumstances in the Arctic are seen as 'laboratory' in which sustainable art and cultural policy is developed in collaboration with all of the Arctic counties. Artists and representatives of art and cultural policy will discuss the theme and promote circumpolar collaboration. The event will be the second Arctic Art Summit: the first one was arranged in Harstad, Norway, in 2017.

- 'Arctic laboratory' as a theme of the event refers to innovative collaboration between art and cultural sector, creative industries, business owners and regional development. The Arctic region with its challenges is seen as a testing field. The aim is to create models for art and cultural policy that support sustainable development. These models are needed globally, says Timo Jokela, professor in the University of Lapland and the leader or the Arctic Sustainable Arts and Design (ASAD) network.

Artists and other actors of art and cultural sector and policy will attend from all of the countries that are members of the Arctic Council: Canada, the Kingdom of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, the Russian Federation, Sweden and the United States. In addition, participants from countries that show interest towards the Arctic matters are invited: representatives of China, Japan and Scotland. International journalists will also be invited. In total, we expect between 350 and 400 participants to attend the Summit.

The key aim of the Arctic Arts Summit 2019 is to support art and cultural sectors in the circumpolar collaboration. We need to recognize, develop and promote sustainable and responsible models of action, long term planning, infrastructure in the creative field and cooperation in education. The indigenous art and cultural policy as well as interdisciplinary research on the impact of the art and culture are essential themes of the summit.

- The aim of the series of Arctic Arts Summits is to strengthen international interaction and collaboration of the art and cultural sector. It is important that art and culture are more strongly present in the discussions about the future in the Arctic. Also the importance of arts and culture for the regional and sustainable development needs to be highlighted, says Riitta Kaivosoja, General Director in the Department for Art and Cultural Policy in the Ministry of Education and Culture in Finland.

The art program of the event includes exhibitions, concerts and performances. The art program will be produced by the art institutions and organizations in Lapland in collaboration with their Arctic partners. The main exhibition will be shown in the Art Museum of Rovaniemi. It will be curated and produced in collaboration with the museum, the Artists´Association of Lapland and curators´collective Pikene på Broen.

The University of Lapland is the lead organization for the arrangement of the Arctic Arts Summit 2019. The Ministry of Education and Culture of Finland, the Arts Promotion Center Finland, Sámi Parliament, the Regional Council of Lapland and the University of Arctic form the steering group of the summit. In Rovaniemi, the main local organizations that are involved in the planning of the Summit are the Arts Promotion Centre Finland – The Regional Office of Lapland, the city of Rovaniemi, the University of Arctic, the Artists Association of Lapland and Rovaniemi-Lapland Congresses.

For more information, please contact:
Timo Jokela, University of Lapland,
Tomi Aho, Arts Promotion Centre Finland – The Regional Office of Rovaniemi / Lapland,

More information about Arctic Art Summit here.