MEHI – Media Art History in Finland is a 3-year project initiated by the Finnish Media Art Network. The objective of the project is to record and publish the history of Finnish media art, and to build information infrastructures for its documentation in the future.
The scope of the project is based on a wide definition of media art as a practice working with and reflecting on media and technology. It will span all media art related genres and a history timeline ranging from experiments in early 1900s to the 2020s.
MEHI is realized in a consortium between the Media Art Network with its member organizations AV-arkki, Bioart Society, M-cult, MUU Artists’ Association and The Finnish Light Art Society FLASH, with Poike Productio as project producer. A 15-member expert group guides the process and is responsible for its art historical framing. Key project partners are The National Gallery of Finland and The National Library of Finland. 20 media art organizations contribute materials to the database collection.
MEHI project is based on three work packages:
- Information infrastructures for media art. A comprehensive reference database of Finnish media art works and events (producer: MUU) as well as a special ontology and open data for media art (producer: M-cult).
- Documenting and archiving historical materials. Interviews with Finnish pioneers of the field and documentation of key historical events (producer: AV-arkki), as well as conservation plans for pioneering works in various genres (producer: FLASH).
- Anthology of Finnish Media Art. A book exploring “The 1st Century of Media Art in Finland” (producer: Bioart Society).
The results will be archived in the Finnish National Gallery. They will be made accessible to millions of online users via Finna.fi and Europeana.eu collections as well as by the Finto Ontology Service and Wikidata. The anthology will be published by PARVS Publishing Ltd., and a selection of articles will be made available in English at the media-art-finland.fi website.
The project has been made possible by The Finnish Cultural Foundation, The Swedish Cultural Foundation and Kone Foundation, with support from The Ministry of Education and Culture and AVEK Promotion Centre for Audiovisual Culture in Finland. The preliminary research phase was funded by Oskar Öflund Foundation in 2020.