About us

IHME Expert Team 2016Expert team of Pro Arte Foundation Finland, from left: Hanna Johansson, Paula Toppila, Timo Valjakka, Tuula Arkio and Leevi Haapala. Photo: Veikko Somerpuro

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IHME Mission

Pro Arte Foundation Finland seeks to promote art as a resource for democratic society, and as an important part of human life and everyday existence. The Foundation’s aim is to enhance the status and visibility of visual art, to improve the relationship between visual art and the public, and to make it more accessible. The Foundation’s work is international in scope and directed at anyone interested in culture. The Foundation produces the annual IHME Contemporary Art Festival, consisting of a commissioned work of art in a public space, as well as lectures, discussions, and art-education projects.

Each year, Pro Arte Foundation Finland invites an internationally recognized visual artist or group of artists to make a temporary work of art, the IHME Project, in public space. The way the IHME Project is to be carried out, along with its form and location, are jointly determined by the Foundation and the selected artist. The annual IHME Festival offers also lectures, films, workshops, as well as discussions of the IHME Project themes together with the artist. Free admission to all events.

The Finnish word IHME means “miracle” or “wonder”. However, it is in daily use in a variety of phrases meaning something strange, weird, something that wakens curiosity.

Our story

What if art happened in a place where everybody is already: shopping centres, train stations and trams? What if it was something fleeting – a smile exchanged with a stranger, a shared moment, or an attempt to understand the distance to a far-away traveller, a meteorite from three billion years ago? What if it did not seem important to know if it was a work of art – if more weight was attached to what it felt like or who you would tell about it? And what if, even though everything seems to be just as it always has been, something surprising happens that makes you think: what if?


IHME Contemporary Art Festival
/ Pro Arte Foundation Finland
Kalevankatu 4, 2nd floor
00100 Helsinki, Finland


Billing information

Pro Arte Foundation Finland has introduced electronic processing of invoices as of 1 January 2016. We are looking forward to receiving primarily electronic invoices from you. If you are not able to send electronic invoices, please contact Avion Accounting: info@avion.fi or +358 201 407 100.

Our electronic invoice addresses are:

Electronic invoice address: 003721485721
Operator (Basware): BAWCFI22


Executive Director Paula Toppila, tel. +358-45-1240096

Cultural Producer Päivi Matala, tel. +358-45-2350080
Full-time from November to April, part-time from May to October (Mon-Wed)

Communications Officer Oona Simolin, tel. +358-45-6326267
Until 31 December 2018


Chair Tuula Arkio
tuula.arkio(at)ihmefestival.fi, tel. +358-40-5057687

Board Members:

Leevi Haapala
Hanna Johansson
Marja Ramm-Schmidt
Timo Valjakka

Administrator Lauri Paloheimo, tel. +358-40-7778890

Expert Team

The expert team of IHME invites the IHME artist to conceive the Project, and also plans the programme of the Festival.

The expert team of the foundation is: Tuula Arkio (chair), Leevi Haapala, Hanna Johansson, Paula Toppila (research, secretary), and Timo Valjakka.


Pro Arte Foundation Finland is funded by a private donor who wishes to remain anonymous. In 2015−17 the festival is also funded by Kone Foundation.