Saari Residence


Together virtually and across sectors

From January to February 2021, the Saari Residence will be home to six artists and a researcher who represent different perspectives from different parts of the world. The people working at the Saari Residence are visual artist Elina Juopperi, soprano Meeri Pulakka, visual artist Harriina Räinä and researcher Karoliina Sjö. The artists working from home are Swedish writer, musician and artist Leif Holmstrand and Kenyan musicians BoiBlacc and KiliHippie.

During their home residency, Kenyan producer and recording artist BoiBlacc focuses on observing themselves in order to develop their work. BoiBlacc and producer KiliHippie are working on new material as continuation for the debut album The Blacc Circle, which was released in 2020. In their songs, BoiBlacc uses a unique combination of English and the Kenyan creole known as Sheng to tell stories of struggle and hope.

At their home residence, the artist and producer of hip hop music, KiliHippie (Kenya), is working on The Blacc Canvas album with their work partner BoiBlacc. The Blacc Canvas is a follow-up to the album The Blacc Circle, which is available on all streaming apps. KiliHippie describes themselves as an alien in their own right who makes music that fits seamlessly into our digital age and is inspired by the golden age of hip hop.

Artist, writer and musician Leif Holmstrand (Sweden) is spending their home residency writing their fourth novel, which deals with secular magic, queers and partially psychotic shamanistic rituals/games/objects. The novel also examines prostitution and stories about friendships that have come to an end, as well as alternative family structures. During their residency, they are also working on various art objects (sculptures, images, paraphernalia for rituals), text-sound compositions and short films.

Visual artist Elina Juopperi presents themselves as an artist from Northern Finland and considers themselves a maker of documentary work that deals with nature, culture and world news. At the Saari Residence, they work mainly by drawing and uses the flood of images provided by the Internet as their source material, especially landscapes, satellite images and map programs. Their goal is to highlight the open questions and pain points humans imprint on the landscape, nature or society.

During their residency, soprano Meeri Pulakka is working on a solo soprano concert programme consisting of contemporary compositions. They are currently particularly interested in implementing a solo performance and exploring the instrumental possibilities of sound. The concert programme they are working on will combine sound and movement into a comprehensive performance.

Visual artist Harriina Räinä is spending their residency working on their artistic research project The Other as Matter using woodblock printing, sculpture and text. Through the medium of woodblock printing, Räinä’s project examines the ethics of making art and human beings’ connection with non-human animals on a larger scale. They also reflect on the role matter of animal origin plays in the process and end result of woodblock printing from the point of view of animal studies, ecocriticism and ethics.

During their residency in Saari, PhD student Karoliina Sjö (cultural history, University of Turku) is focusing on writing their doctoral thesis, which explores the writing of diaries and the way Kirsti Teräsvuori composed a story about themselves, their life and experiences in the diaries they wrote at the beginning of the 20th century. They are working on their doctoral thesis with the help of a grant from Kone Foundation.