I have chosen choreography as a way to study the complexity of Human Behaviour. Dance, to me, is the most primal form of communication, a direct experience of our environment and conditions. I believe that the human body carries with it the shared memories, culture and history inherited a long time ago, passed on from generation to generation. This hereditary knowledge running through our veins is exposed in the intimate act of choreography. Instead of trying to re-invent the wheel all over again, I try to listen to the voices of the past in service of the common culture I share with those around me.
I have trained in numerous movement techniques, methods and conventions in hope of revealing that which is authentic and endogenous about The Human Body in Motion. To peel off the skin, to reveal that which lies beneath all the masking.
Sacrificing your body on stage, in performance, under the surveillance of the critical public, in the midst of a ritual… This is a heroic act, performed on the behalf of the common culture we share with those around us.
The spectator understands that such an act of unveiling is an invitation to her and him to do the same, and this often arouses opposition. Our daily efforts are intended to hide the truth about ourselves. We try to escape what is truthful about us, whereas here, we are invited to stop and take a closer look. The unmasked Human Body on stage invites us to do the same. For one to respond, to attend and to participate – this is an intimate act which demands us to unveil ourselves as well.
From rock to gravel, to dust, to mud, to rock.
Contemporary art does not have to be literal, descriptive or representational. When composing choreography, I wish to write an Open Text so that the audience will feel the space to participate and indeed, complete the circle. I wish to leave room for the audience to participate. There has to be space for the audience to participate. It is not my responsibility to write something literal, state the obvious or produce answers. My responsibility is to create the Circumstances where something significant might occur.
At its best, this something can be an empowering, uplifting and soul-nourishing experience.
Blog post of January 2019: In 2018, the Finnish Cultural Institute for the Benelux’s programme focused on Transition. In 2019, our theme is RE/definitions.
For some years now, I have tried to live my life with this principle in mind: because everything around us is constantly in transition, almost anything can become a reality. By this I mean our fears as well as opportunities, both the positive and negative ways of thinking about the future of our world. Personally, I would like to believe that we are capable of moving towards a better tomorrow, even if reality as filtered through our daily newsfeed often seems to contradict this.
Blog post of December 2018: How did you wake up this morning? Maybe to an alarm on your cell phone? What was your first thought? For many of us it’s “Can I sleep for another half hour?”. And, what was your last thought of the evening? Maybe you thought about whether you could watch just one more episode on your streaming service or whether it was really time for you to go to sleep. In fact, it is likely that these were the first and last risk management decisions of your day. Each of one us makes hundreds of risk management decisions whether we are at home, in our free time, or at work. Do you know the kinds of risks you are taking while navigating the digital world in our everyday life?
Blog post of June 2018: What if the future of music came from the Far North? There is no doubt that Nordic and Finnish musicians play an important role in the international music scene. Every category has a Nordic touch : vocal and instrumental music, metal, traditional and contemporary music, and jazz. Unlike here in the South, there are no fixed boundaries between musical languages in the North. Every musical genre finds its place between tradition and modernity, fusing into a fertile synergy without losing its own character. This is one of the cultural strengths of the Nordic countries.
Blog post of May 2018: For several years, this small international festival has been experimenting with new curatorial practices in a fierce and open way. The festival distinguishes itself by introducing co-curating, by politicising curatorship, and by rethinking the international. Baltic Circle hereby positions itself as a forerunner and is an ideal ground to visit with students who are themselves operating in the field of “expanding curation”. Three students, their tutor (Lara Staal, independent curator and publicist) and artistic director of DAS Theatre Barbara Van Lindt visited the festival and proposed some moments of exchange. In January we invited artistic director of the Festival Satu Herrala to visit us, and engage in a conversation where we reflected upon our visit (and already anticipated a next visit, in the autumn of 2018…)
Blog post of April 2018: Less than two months ago I moved from Tokyo to Brussels, straight into the heart of Europe and the Finnish Cultural Institute for the Benelux’s great programming for 2018! We have our excellent previous Director Aleksi Malmberg to thank for carrying out the preparations for the start of the year, as well as our amazing team, with whom I now have the privilege of adding new initiatives and ideas to the programme.
Blog post of February 2018: “Okay, so there’s nothing here on the Sami people”, I noticed at the end of an introductory tour of the House of European History. I was visiting the relatively new House of European History at the beginning of February as part of a group of twenty odd individuals involved in the Remembering 1918 programme. Each one of us had the task that day of leading our own public tours of the House of European History. After the introductory tour, we were given a few hours to prepare to offer our own views on the museum’s exhibition which deals with European history.