Pertin Valinta, or Pertti’s Choice in English, is Finland’s first social enterprise owned by people with learning disabilities.
It was founded by the members of the punk band Pertti Kurikka’s Name Day to support the careers of disabled artists. It will open its doors for a three-day popup in London’s Shoreditch on 8-10 August this summer. The Pertti’s Choice popup will showcase Finnish and British Outsider art, alongside a vegan café with music performances and products available to buy.
The art element of the experience will include:
- a VR exhibition, Inside Outside Finland, which takes the viewer to four Outsider art environments in Finland
- portraits by visual artist Tanya Raabe-Webber,
- drawings by Pertti Kurikka’s alter ego Kalevi Helvetti
- photographs of Pertti Kurikka’s Name Day international tours.
The popup will see gigs by Kalevi Helvetti, the groove jazz artist Kalle Salonen, singer Eeva Lusenius, Rudewolf, DJ Miika and the Brighton band Zombie crash.
The team from Pertti’s Choice will be accompanied by staff members of the much loved IPI café in Helsinki’s Kallio district. Their mission will be to serve quality coffee, while introducing a model for employing disabled people.
“There is great interest in the UK towards the Finnish model, and this popup aims to develop international networks of disabled people”, says Emilie Gardberg, director of the Finnish Institute in London. The institute is bringing the popup to London together with its partners.
One of the main aims of Pertti’s Choice is to create a model for facilitating the employment of disabled people in the cultural sector. At present, artists’ earnings can affect benefits so a successful artist may even be in danger of losing their supported housing. The situation in Britain is similar, and many activists in the sector are working to find a solution with models like Pertti’s Choice.
Find out more here.
About the Finnish Institute in London
The Finnish Institute in London is an expert on Finnish culture and society, working in the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland. The Institute supports the internationalisation of Finnish contemporary art and helps artists, researchers and social and cultural actors to create international networks.