Pleasure Garden

a listening garden
by Genevieve Lacey

Puijo Forest

Puijontie 135, 70300 Kuopio, Finland
22 July — 7 August 2023

Pleasure Garden was presented as Soiva metsä (The Forest of Music) by BarokkiKuopio Early Music Festival in Puijo Forest, Kuopio, Finland.

Puijo is a protected nature reserve, included in the European Union Natura 2000 protection plan for its ancient Fennoscandian herb-rich forest and Western Taïga environments. The area was first protected in 1928. The nature reserve land is owned by the city of Kuopio, and the forests and recreational areas are free to enter.

The Kuopio Naturalists’ Society (KLYY) was established in December 1896. It is one of the oldest scientific societies in Finland and a local representative of the Finnish Association for Nature Conservation (Suomen luonnonsuojeluliitto, SLL).

The forest vegetation includes several types of spruce, pine and birch trees, as well as moist fern and tall grass groves. The forest-covered hill offers a variety of nature- and sports-related activities, and is visited yearly by 100, 000 people. Finnish people are very fond of nature, and Finland is the most forest rich country in Europe, with approximately 75% of its surface area covered by forests.

Pleasure Garden was installed in the old-growth forest, where the tall spruces, lush ferns and moss-covered soil have been mostly untouched for centuries. Partly due to the old agricultural technique of burning forests before growing crops — resulting in a nutrient-rich layer of ash, which makes the soil fertile — the amount of different species of vegetation and animals is astonishing. Puijo’s old forest is also an ideal habitat for many birds, including chaffinch, wrens and treecreepers, robins, song thrushes, goldcrest, siskin and northern three-toed woodpeckers, red-breasted flycatchers and greenish warblers. This was a magical place for the work, and brought new dimensions to the listening experience.



Tommi Karjalainen, Onni Vakkuri / Lakea Film Company
Tommi Karjalainen

Our thanks to collaborators around the world who have brought Pleasure Garden to life:

Jane Davidson and the Australian Research Council’s Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotions, Australia Council for the Arts, Malgosia Fiebig, City Carillonneur of Utrecht, Toby Chadd and ABC Classics, Sheena Boughen and the Four Winds community, Music Norway, Lou Oppenheim and Circus Oz, Graham Pushee and Arts Management, Atticus Bastow, Nick Roux, Ann Lacey, Francine Tanner, Jude Gun, Steven Richardson, Nicole Newman, Fiona Blair, Damon Young, Pat Hockey, Greg Lyons, Adam Gibson, Joseph Browning, Madeleine Flynn, Tim Humphrey, Australian Performing Arts Market; Criss Canning and David Glenn of Lambley Garden; Fiona Winning, Lieven Bertels and Sydney Festival, Ed Champion and staff at Vaucluse House, Sydney Living Museums; Kara Ward, Emer Harrington, Catherine Ashton, Mark Lowrey, Lillian Desormeaux, Adele Conlin and Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne; Daniel Brine, Mark Denbigh and the team at Norfolk and Norwich Festival; Paul Forecast, Alastair Bradshaw, Tina Hammond and all at Felbrigg Hall; Suzie Curtis, Kate Robinson, Huw Humphries, Paul Keene, Sarah Hickling, Miko Malkowski and all at The Charterhouse and The Barbican; Tim Bifield, Anna Casey, Rachel Smith, Rebecca Driver, Sheila Pott and all at Salters' Yard; Michael Schneider, Patrick Schellenberg and all at Boswil; Jane Marriott, Nicola Stephenson, Trevor Nicholson and the team at Harewood; Matias Häkkinen, Sanni Antikainen and the team and community of BarokkiKuopio Early Music Festival, Kuopio; Ricciarda Belgiojoso, Corrado Beldi, Mattia Cavazzana, Chiara Gozzi, Enrico Bettinello and all at NU festival, as well as Igor Festari and the community at Museo di Storia Naturale Faraggiana Ferrandi, Novara.