Saari Residence


First guests of the year arrive at the Saari Residence

At the turn of the year, a new group of international artists and researchers arrived at the Saari Residence in Mynämäki.

Film director Liza Babenko (Ukraine), researcher Jose A. Cañada (Spain), artist and Doctor of Fine Arts Teemu Mäki, conductor Lygia O’Riordan (Ireland), artist Hodhayfa Salih (Iraq), violinist Pia Siirala, animation director Soetkin Verstegen (Belgium) and dance artist and choreographer Canan Yücel Pekiçten (Turkey) will work at the residence for a period of two months.

Ukrainian Liza Babenko will focus on writing the script for her new experimental short film at the Saari Residence. 36 Scenes Or Their Traces deals with a violent crime perpetrated in the Crimea against the female protagonist and the process of her recovery.

Spanish researcher and PhD student Jose A. Cañada’s study Securing the living – governance, materiality and understandings of life during biological emergencies opens up how biological emergencies, such as pandemics and bioterrorism have dominated global debate. At the Saari Residence he is writing his doctoral thesis for the University of Helsinki´s Faculty of Social Sciences.

During his time at the residence, artist and Doctor of Fine Arts Teemu Mäki is writing his fourth book of poetry and a book of essays. The book of essays is a sequel to his doctoral thesis Darkness Visible – Essays on Art, Philosophy and Politics (Photo/Like/WSOY 2005/2008).

Irish conductor Lygia O’Riordan is making use of the Saari Residence’s tranquillity while she becomes absorbed in this year´s concerts and programme for the chamber orchestra Ensemble XXI. The world premiere of Pia Siirala’s composition Ulita’s Walk will also feature in the orchestra´s programme.

Iraqi artist and painter Hodhayfa Salih desires through his art to describe what it means to live in the middle of war.

Violinist Pia Siirala examines in her work the impact that the music of the Indigenous peoples of Russia has on how music is heard and perceived. Through playing the violin and composing, she endeavours to explore what archaic, memory-based music can bring to her own musicianship. During her time at the residence, she intends to compose pieces for concerts relating to her artistic doctorate.

Belgian animation director and animator Soetkin Verstegen is making an experimental animated film at the residence called Freeze frame, where ice is used as the material for the work.

Turkish dance artist and choreographer Canan Yücel Pekiçten is working on three solo dance pieces during her time at the residence. The pieces, including their creative process, comprise part of her PhD degree. She also intends to put the finishing touches to her work Der Zwerg/The Dwarf, which is based on Schubert´s lied Der Zwerg, D.771 and on Pär Lagerkvist´s novel Dvärgen. She is also stating work on a dance work inspired by Madam Butterfly where she considers Orientalism and Japonism from a feminist perspective. Her third project is based on Oskar Merikanto´s opera Maiden of the North.

The Saari Invited Artist Matthew Cowan will continue working at the Saari Residence until the end of April.