Ars Pori Megastore is a six week long festival including exhibitions, live performances and events that welcomes art and culture into the heart of Pori. Opening on the 25th of September inside the Isokarhu shopping center in the city center of Pori, it provides a platform for a large selection of unique artists by claiming the vacant spaces left behind by businesses. Keeping the Covid-19 restrictions in mind, it will also offer a social space where people can reconnect, experience art and enjoy events ranging from experimental and classical music to graffiti workshops.

Well before the start of the pandemic, businesses were abandoning the city center of Pori, Which was most evident in the empty corridors of the local shopping center. However the vacant spaces offer a unique opportunity for culture to flourish, a chance to plant cultural events and community spaces into this sterilized barren cityscape.

The initial inspiration for the project came in the fall of 2020 in the form of a week long event “Kulttuurityhjiö”, created as a part of the EU’s UrbCultural Planning project aimed at revitalizing city centers through cultural interventions. During the week-long event roughly 2500 people visited the Pop-up exhibitions and evening clubs hosted in the then vacant Anttila store. It showed us the potential of empty urban spaces and gave us the urge to try something more ambitious.

Our goal is to create an annual art festival that reclaims public spaces as a place for art and culture and in doing so offers a renewed operation model for a safer, more diverse and more transparent art festival. We hope to help businesses and local organizations and cultural agents see the impact art and culture can have in communities and in revitalizing urban spaces. Ars Pori Megastore aims to bring this about by creating artist driven exhibitions and events that can give people a new way of seeing their surroundings and the potential hidden within them.


Yrjönkatu 14 28100 Pori, Finland
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IsoKarhu, 14, Yrjönkatu, Riihiketo, Pori, Porin seutukunta, Satakunta, South-Western Finland, Mainland Finland, 28100, Finland