Ko-koo-mo

There is too little time in the world today for play, creativity, insights and enthusiasm. KO-KOO-MO offers the freedom to create and play in your own way, inspired by objects that light up the imagination. KO-KOO-MO is a visual art concept created by puppeteer Roosa Halme, artist Kai Ruohonen and cultural producer Annukka Ketola. It is built around three components: a human-shaped reconstruction kit; the Block Theatre; and a tool for play. Roosa Halme gives performances and conducts workshops using the reconstruction kit designed by Kai Ruohonen. In the workshops the wooden blocks become tools for play.

KO-KOO-MO is oriented towards the wellbeing of people and the environment. The human-shaped reconstruction kit is a living sculpture and a self-portrait of its user: just like the user, it is made up of existing resources, a manifestation bound to the moment by its form. The set of blocks is not unlike the raw material reserves of the Earth, it sets a limit to how we mould ourselves and our environment. Whether using building blocks or natural resources, balance is crucial so as to ensure that the life span is not restricted to the current user. The wood used in the reconstruction kit is chosen for durability, but also for its aesthetic qualities – its own, natural colour. It contains no chemicals and is 100% recyclable – it is practically eternal. The blocks are made by a scale model carpenter, whose professionalism ensures maximum economy with minimal expenditure of energy or materials. KO-KOO-MO’s social dimension consists of focusing part of the performances and workshops for disadvantaged groups in Finland and abroad.

 

HUMAN-SHAPED RECONSTRUCTION KIT

The human-shaped reconstruction kit is a set of wooden blocks designed by visual artist Kai Ruohonen. Conceptually, the set refers to human infrastructure, to the functionality and relationship between humanity and the fundamental structures we maintain. The reconstruction kit can also be seen as a vehicle and a tool for play. It is used to give a tangible form for the content of play. Thereconstruction kit can be treated as a doll, an object that represents a person or some human action, or it can function as the user’s self-portrait and miniature sculptural likeness.

Each variation made from the components of the reconstruction kit represents a unique structural solution that the builder has bound to the chosen moment. The configurations of the component parts permit endless variety. Playing with the components, the user can discover an endless number of variations and ways to join the blocks together. The wooden block is made of recyclable material: it can always be reinvented again.

The human-shaped reconstruction kit is a registered trademark, and all accessories created in its name are enjoy copyright protection. All products that bear the trademark of the human-shaped reconstruction kit are designed with safety in mind. The reconstruction kit is made to last and to develop along with its user.

The human-shaped reconstruction kit and its variations have been used in multi-disciplinary art projects and for non-profit purposes since 2007. Its target groups have included individuals of all ages, cultures and levels of development in Finland, Russia, Latvia, Denmark, Namibia, South Africa and Mozambique.

 

BLOCK THEATRE

The Block Theatre is a non-verbal, evolving sculptural puppet theatre. It is suitable for all spectators irrespective of age or language. Block Theatre is a form of visual theatre developed by puppeteer Roosa Halme, and its stars are wooden blocks designed by artist Kai Ruohonen. In the Block Theatre, abstract wooden blocks come alive in the hands of the puppeteer. In the Block Theatre workshop, everyone can be a builder as the blocks acquire new configurations and stories through associative play.

The basic physical component of the Block Theatre is a set of wooden blocks that are not unlike conventional architectural building blocks. The blocks are used to create figures, objects, structures and landscapes in performances and workshops. The fundamental immaterial elements of Block Theatre is how the blocks are cast into different roles. Through play, the inanimate blocks come alive, both in the performances and the workshops. Made of different types of wood, the geometric blocks allow users to give the physically unchanging object multiple interpretations in different contexts of use and associative play. The wooden blocks are familiar and safe basic forms that are easy to handle and manipulate. The Block Theatre has no rules, and there is no risk of failure.

The Block Theatre brings together the creativity, professionalism and visual insights of two artists when Roosa Halme in her role as director, puppeteer and musician takes on the human-shaped reconstruction kit designed by Kai Ruohonen. In addition to puppetry and the actor’s and director’s contribution, music also plays an important part in the performances. Providing a non-verbal performance with a carefully selected and designed soundscape turns the act into a multisensory experience.

 

Tools for play

Play is a vital element in the KO-KOO-MO philosophy, and the blocks are ideal for that purpose. They bring out the very essence of play by inspiring spontaneous building, creativity and collaboration. The blocks are a versatile instrument for expressing emotions, solving problems and engaging in social interaction through play. They can be used both in supervised situations as well as for independent work, by children, young people, adults, senior citizens and people with special needs.