Press

Helsinki, Finland – 14/04/2020  – Free for publishing


In the midst of the crisis Finnish art project hires people to design their own jobs

While more and more companies are laying off people because of corona, Finnish art project is searching for employees and encourages us for rethinking of working life.

Juhani Haukka (on the left) and Lauri Antti Mattila. photo: Visa Knuuttila

Through corona crisis rebuilding the society is closer than anyone could have guessed. Searching for a Job? turn the process of employment into art, by inviting people to dream up a job that would be impossible to do otherwise – and then making it a reality. The Finns employs seven people for two months – to do any job they’ve come up with. It’s a unique, Finland-wide live art project by Helsinki-based artists Lauri Antti Mattila and Juhani Haukka

Seven employees will be selected based on applications left on the project website. Applicants can either write out a free-from job proposal or complete a questionnaire and have a job proposed for them. The online application process runs until the 7th of May. During the first month, over a thousand applications were sent in, featuring job ideas ranging from training reindeer to documenting the silence of Finland.

The world of work is undergoing a rapid, multi-faceted transition, with the rise of AI and automation rendering more and more jobs obsolete. Meanwhile a number of surveys show that an increasing percentage of employees find their work meaningless. In Searching for a Job?, art participates in rethinking of society through a radical questioning of the concept of work. It is an exploration of possibilities of work and art in the post-fossil era.

Lauri Antti Mattila, one of the artists, says: “We should free ourselved of the coercive aspects of work life. Change requires structures. This piece presents a basic income utopia that creates space for reconsidering our ways of being”

“The project isn’t just a commentary on work life or a fantasy about a different relationship to work – it literally creates an alternative kind of work life and reality, by realizing jobs and paying for them”, summarizes Juhani Haukka.

Searching for a job? is a joint production by Live Art Society, Circus Maximus art collectives and the Finnish Labour Museum Werstas. It is funded by the Kone Foundation, Arts Promotion Centre Finland and the Alfred Kordelin Foundation.

Project website: https://etsitkotoita.org/eng

More information & interview requests:

Lauri Antti Mattila
lauriantti.mattila@gmail.com
+358 40 742 7787

Juhani Haukka
ju.m.haukka@gmail.com
+358 40 509 1208

Searching for a Job? – is a participatory art piece that’s searching for employees to do the work they would like to do.

Finnish art project Searching for a Job? turns employment into art

Etsitkö töitä?

Searching for a job? combines experimental architecture, social sculpture and documentary filmmaking into a hybrid live art project. It project spreads into urban and media spaces, turning employment into art and contemplating the possibilities of art and work in the era of post-fossil reconstruction. It is art participating in rethinking of society.

Photos: Visa Knuuttila

Searching for a job? is a study on work, time and community by Helsinki-based artists Juhani Haukka and Lauri Antti Mattila. By offering two-month grant periods, we’re looking for people to do exactly the job they want. The project radically questions the concept of work, by severing it from the prevailing result based logic of market economy and exploring the idea of work as a practice of relational positioning.

The application process opens online in February 2020. By completing the questionnaire, the applicant participates in a raffle that allows seven people to work for two months, doing the job proposed by them or planned in collaboration.

Searching for a Job? creates a space for extraordinary deeds: the ones that are quiet, were abandoned, lost in a hurry, dreamed of, did not get done. Ones that need to be done. Or that do not exist yet. That could be dreamed and realized into this world. A good deed. Work that perhaps has not been possible to carry out, or that has seemed too crazy, too wild, too ordinary, non-profitable or vague. That might in the end turn out to be of utmost importance, or that could open a possibility for the most important, in surprising ways.

The project is Finland-wide. Age range is from 4 to 120 years.

Searching for a job? is a partial production by the Live Art Society, Circus Maximus and the Finnish Labour Museum Werstas.

The project is funded by the Kone Foundation, the Alfred Kordelin Foundation and the Arts Promotion Centre Finland.

Photos on this site can be freely used in articles about Searching for a job -project. Photographer’s name must be mentioned.