Marita Liulia is the first Artist in Residence at Aalto University
Aalto University has established an Aalto AiR residence for international artists and experts. Artists invited to the residence are responsible for the development of artistic activity at Aalto University.
Aalto’s Artist in Residence system follows the practices of the best international universities. Its purpose is to create a new kind of cooperation model within the University and enable collaboration between the sectors of art, technology and economics. The role of a visiting artist can be compared to one of a postdoctoral researcher. The visiting artists are selected by invitation.
Artist-director Marita Liulia (b. 1957) has been invited as the first artist in the programme from 2011 until 2013. Ms. Liulia has had great success in many different fields of art and has also produced her own works. Liulia’s works of art have been on display in 45 countries, and working at residences all over the world has always been a part of her work. Liulia’s task is to prepare the practices and financing base of Aalto AiR and to act as its first artist.
“We invited Marita Liulia, because she has solid experience of international connectedness both as an artist and as an Artist in Residence. Throughout her career, Liulia has also operated in the middle ground between art, technology, and business,” Dean Helena Hyvönen explains.
At Aalto Air, the artist works for an agreed period of time in customised cooperation with his or her own team, the personnel and students at Aalto University schools and partners. The residence includes teaching duties. The objective is to create an entity of production that is of high quality and combines various fields of art, research and technology. The production of the work involves research, reporting and productisation. Finished works of art will be put on display, to be assessed by the public and professionals. The University will pay for the artist’s salary, whereas the artist will be in charge of the financing of the production.
“The AiR activity is important for the University, because it opens up the operation of the University and makes concrete the relationships between the University and various actors in cultural life,” Liulia states about the significance of AiR. “For students, it provides an opportunity to monitor the different phases in a professional project. AiR gives people a chance to carry out a multidisciplinary and artistically ambitious production that would otherwise be difficult to complete.”
During her residence period, Liulia will finish her Dance of Death trilogy, which combines film, modern dance and new technology. In the dance film series Liulia’s partners have included, among others, dancer-choreographer Virpi Pahkinen and Tero Saarinen Company. The first part of the series, Return of the Goddess, has received production support from the Finnish Film Foundation and the Promotion Centre for Audiovisual Culture AVEK. The majority of Liulia’s work efforts and production will be carried out at Media Centre Lume at the Aalto University School of Art and Design.
“I have been very busy during this period, so to my delight, I can already promise that the premiere of the Return of the Goddess, the first part of my trilogy that will be finished during my residence period will be held next year,” Marita Liulia says.
This year, Liulia’s works of art will be on display not only in Finland but also in Switzerland, Norway, the United States and Luxembourg.