Paula Toppila has been the Executive Director and Curator of Pro Arte Foundation Finland since 2007. Toppila also produced the commissioned works of art for the IHME Contemporary Art Festival (2009-2018) in public space by Antony Gormley, Susan Philipsz, Superflex, Miroslaw Balkan, Yael Bartana, Jeremy Deller, Katerina Seda, Theaster Gates with The Black Monks of Mississippi and Henrik Håkansson. Christian Boltanski’s continuing work The Heart Archive was performed by IHME in four city libraries in Finland. Toppila led the organizational change from the IHME Contemporary Art Festival to IHME Helsinki, which currently combines art, science and climate work. The aim is to promote freedom of art, eco-social civilization, a sustainable and democratic society and a diverse good life.
Toppila has worked as a curator at the Frame in 1998-2007, and has curated several Finnish and international exhibitions both in Finland and abroad, e.g. Finland’s representation at the Sao Paulo Biennale in 2001 and the fourth Pirkanmaa Triennial in Tampere in 2009. Toppila has co-curated e.g. Momentum – at the Nordic Biennale in Moss, Norway in 2000. She has contributed to Siksi, Taide, Flash Art and Framework magazines. She has a master’s degree in philosophy, majoring in art history. She has supplemented her skills with both curatorial and leadership and management training.