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Liisa Ikonen, Professor, Design for the Performing Arts Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture, Helsinki: Department of Film, TV and Scenography. Ikonen is the director of Scenography Major in Aalto ARTS, and she was the Head of research in Aalto ARTS ELO 2014–2015. She was also member of board of Doctoral Program in Artistic Research TAhTO[1] (Aalto ARTS & University of Arts Helsinki). Ikonen is a member of Doctoral Programme committee in Aalto ARTS (2014–).

Ikonen has worked as scenographer throughout her 25 year long career in both experimental and institutional fields of performing arts, and her research has all along been closely tied with artistic practice. Ikonen’s experitise in renewing artistic research practices has been recognized e.g. through her systematic development work in project Hypnos (1994–2000) in which she developed work methods through several site-specific performances in non-institutional found spaces in urban environment. The development work has continued in other artistic projects situated in non-theatrical spaces in urban sphere since (i.e. Spice – Spiritualizing Space 2009-2011; interdisciplinary research project of urban planning). In her postdoctoral research she continues the work by developing the collective multidisciplinary design and application of alternative uses of scenographic means. She has lectured, given workshops and supervised students in all degree levels in Aalto ARTS all through her career.

See Aalto ARTS research database ACRIS: https://research.aalto.fi/en/persons/liisa-ikonen(0127c569-85d7-4f40-b397-15f982339547).html

SEE LIISA IN “Spice – Spiritualizing Space”: http://docplayer.net/25806240-Narrative-approaches-for-developing-urban-spaces.html


Maiju Loukola IS A Postdoctoral researcher at the Department of Film, TV and Scenography at aalto arts. Loukola finalized her doctoral thesis Vähän väliä. Näyttämön mediaalisuus ja kosketuksen arkkitehtuuri (Anywhere Near. Mediascenographies and the Architecture of touch´, in 2014) while working as project researcher in the crossdisciplinary Academy of Finland funded project Figures of Touch (2009–2012).her current research interests in the frame of the “floating peripheries – mediating the sense of place” project (2017–2021) are peripheral epistemologies, experimental methods and materialisations in artistic research, and politics of (urban) space.


Loukola works with performative experiments and intermedial spatial interventions, and has presented, coordinated and participated actively in conferences internationally and nationally. SHE participated in  two editions of research pavilion organised by the uniarts helsinki with international collaborators in venice (RP#2: utopia of access in 2017 (with 2 projects), and RP#3: Ecologies of research in 2019). She publishes, leads workshops, supervises and lectures regularly. She has conducted several research-oriented workshops (i.e. the Hidden Cities project, which combined performative means of scenography and mobile pervasive gaming in urban space, 2013–2014) and artistic research workshops combining studio work, spatial interventions and critical readings. She co-curated the Finnish sound-space based exhibition “Weather Station” in Prague Quadrennial Performance Design and Space 2015, which won the 1st prize for Best use of Media in Performance.

See Aalto arts research database: https://research.aalto.fi/fi/persons/maiju-loukola

SEE FLOATING PERIPHERIES PROJECT SITE: https://floatingperipheries.fi/



Elina Lifländer is a spatial artist and performance designer WHO DEFENDED her artistic research/ doctoral studies, entitled RYTMINEN TILALLISUUS LAAJENNETUN SKENOGRAFIAN ILMAISUKEINONA (RHYTHMIC SPATIALITY AS A MEANS OF SPATIAL EXPRESSION IN THE EXPANDED SCENOGRAPHY), in which she combines installation and performing arts and explores new kinds of spatial and rhythmic SCENOGRAPHIC working methods. In her practice alternative participation and intangible materials are carrying out new sights of spatiality in the field of expanded scenography and live installation. Lifländer’s research deals with reactions and alternative participation of the performance designer and audience in the fluctuating performances of today. She asks: how to make invisible elements and working methods as spatial rhythms more comprehensive?

After joining the Doctoral Programme in Artistic Research (TAhTO 2012-2015; see footnote), Lifländer’s study started to move towards a more inter-artistic aspects where live art meets installation and where participatory performance meets music. She is also interested of the concept of the rhythm because of its way of cutting through different art fields in multiple ways. Lifländer’s research process includes, in addition to the written part, three artistic parts realized during 2012-2014: Live installation Between two skies at cellar gallery Laterna Magica, Helsinki (winter 2012), Participatory performance Corridor at the Cable factory’s freight elevator, Helsinki (spring 2014) and live installation Skin of the Space at the Kuva/Tila gallery, Helsinki (autumn 2014). The last piece implements the inner spatial experiences from the Lauttasaari water tower to the gallery space. Another element that unites these three works along with the concept of rhythm is the immersive space where observers are physically within or part of the performative environment.

SEE ELINA IN AALTO ARTS RESEARCH DATABASE; https://research.aalto.fi/en/persons/elina-lifl%C3%A4nder

SEE TAhTO: http://www.artisticresearch.fi/tahto/doctoral-students/elina-liflander/

SEE ELINA IN “Spice – Spiritualizing Space”: http://docplayer.net/25806240-Narrative-approaches-for-developing-urban-spaces.html


[1] TAhTO was the first joint doctoral programme of Finnish art universities that focuses solely on artistic research. It was a joint project of the three faculties within the University of Arts Helsinki (Theatre Academy Helsinki, the Finnish Academy of Fine Arts, the Sibelius Academy) and the Aalto University School of Art and Design (Aalto ARTS). http://www.artisticresearch.fi/tahto/


JARI AALTONEN is A landscape architect WHO has ALSO worked in different positions in Finnish theaters and television productions. His doctoral research “The Art Environment in the Park Context –  Combining artistic, practical and technical endeavors” EXPLORES THE similarities and differences between park architecture and scenography. Scenography and scenographical thinking provides possibilities also outside the theater, but how to encounter – THROUGH A “SCENOGPAHIC LENS” – a park, which doesn’t fulfill the requirements that we normally set for it? How can the artistic, practical and technical endeavors be combined in a park environment?

SEE JARI’S PROFILE AT AALTO RESEARCH DATABASE: https://research.aalto.fi/fi/persons/jari-aaltonen

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