A UEFA exhibition highlighting the relationship between football and Europe from a sporting, social and cultural point of view has begun in Turku, Finland.
The Only A Game? exhibition, designed by Olivier Guilbaud, will help to mark the south-western Finnish city's year as European Capital of Culture, and will run from 16 January until 18 December at Logomo – a former railway engineering workshop now converted into a museum and exhibition venue. UEFA president Michel Platini officially opened the exhibition during a visit to Finland on Friday.
Only A Game? has already enjoyed successful long-term runs in Brussels, Liverpool and Istanbul. It has a wider appeal than just to football fans, as it examines the links between the development of European society and the growth of its most popular sport.
Only A Game? started with the 50th anniversary of the European Union (EU). The purpose of the project is to reflect on the impact of football on society in Europe, and the impact of society at large on football. Football has become a major social and cultural phenomenon, and is part of a common European culture.
The exhibition in Turku can be visited free of charge, and is open to all the family. Visitors are invited to plunge into the emotions of the game, inspired by a selection of prestigious artefacts, trophies and memorabilia covering in particular the last 50 years of European football.
Football in Finland is notable for intensive work in relation to the game's grassroots, and in its educational and health benefits. Women's football also enjoys great popularity in the country. Only A Game? in Turku will celebrate football's grassroots – a key factor in the sport's well-being.
The exhibition also features interactive technology, while a series of quizzes provide an educational angle. For example, the shirts of all of Europe's national teams will be on show, with youngsters being invited to guess which shirt belongs to which country.
Only a Game? – practical details
Address: Logomo, Köydenpunojankatu 14, Turku
Dates: 16 January-18 December 2011
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