I am a Finnish artist based in the UK. My artwork is concerned with humans’ complex relationship with nature and its intersections with social justice, climate justice, migration and notions of belonging.
The work has developed alongside increasing scientific, social and political concern for the habitability of the planet and the possibly permanent damage that our current economic system is causing to both our own and the habitats of all other living things, as well as the more immediate impact of climate change on how we live and where we live.
My work is often made with the participation of people who have a lived experience of displacement and of seeking sanctuary. These participatory projects explore ecological and social issues through communal experiences within rural landscapes and examine issues such as the importance of access to nature and green spaces and how a sense of homelessness – of not belonging – is produced through exclusion.
Collaboration has been an important part of my working approach ever since my practice lead PhD (2004) with Brazilian artist Silvana Macedo.
I have developed intersectional, participatory art projects across a range of organisations (heritage, natural science, third sector organisations) and very different environments from the rain forests of Brazil and the boreal forests of Scandinavia the rural landscape of Hadrian’s Wall in Northumberland National Park and the mudflats of Lindisfarne Nature Reserve. Each has offered a unique combination of ecological, cultural and social/political circumstances, all have pointed to the importance of understanding the deep structures that connect them, the ways in which seemingly different things – places, people, ecologies and social issues – are in fact interdependent and intertwined.
I have sometimes used the term ‘radical hospitality’ to describe aspects of my practice. Hospitality is, of course not radical in itself, but within the current hostile environment (directed towards those perceived as different from elsewhere) even it, begins to feel like a radical, oppositional act. This approach is grounded in notions of friendship and hospitality and recognition - meaning to make welcome and to dissolve the barriers that prevent people from participating fully in their communities.