Centre for Artistic Research

CfAR – the Centre for Artistic Research – is a profiled research centre at the University of the Arts Helsinki (Uniarts Helsinki). Its principal aim is to develop and support activities in Artistic Research (AR) at the postdoctoral level, both in the Academies (Academy of Fine Arts, Sibelius Academy, and Theatre Academy) and in the Uniarts Helsinki as a whole.
CfAR was created in order to form a community where artistic practice and practitioners, research and researchers can interact in varied and fruitful ways. It gathers all postdoctoral artist-researchers, whether they work in professional fields outside universities or within them, by contract or as visiting researchers, with or without external funding, in Finland or abroad.  The staff members at Uniarts Helsinki who have a degree in the arts or conduct artistic research are automatically part of the CfAR community regardless of their unit or cycle. In addition, CfAR is open to other researchers interested in the study of artistic practices and processes who may benefit from artistic interaction and collaboration with artists and artist-researchers.
Introduction to Uniarts’ research as a whole, including AR, other types of research, and doctoral research: Uniarts Helsinki research
CfAR maintains the Portal for artistic research activities in Finland, which gathers information about artistic research in this part of the world.
AR is one of the three profiled/featured research areas at Uniarts. Each area has a centre within the Uniarts Helsinki Research Hub. The other two centres are Taideyliopiston historiafoorumi (HiFo) - Uniarts Helsinki's History Forum - and Center for Educational Research and Academic Development in the Arts (CERADA). There are strong links between the three, and we complement each other. We collectively form the Research Hub to showcase all the research activities at Uniarts.

Facing unpleasant truths

Few of us want to face gross insects or death any more than we want to face our own prejudices. Artistic research can lead us to difficult but important encounters.

- Fourth piece published in a series of articles during RP#3 Research pavilion in Venice 2019 - 

One day, on the island of Harakka off the coast of Helsinki, frogs began to die. They were lying motionless on the cliffs with their bones sticking out and skin dried black.
The summer had been so cold and rainy that there were even fewer insects than usual. Visual artist Tuula Närhinen works on the island of Harakka. She thinks the frogs died of starvation.
The frogs got Närhinen interested in disappearing insects as well. She began collecting dead insects and setting them on display like jewellery in jewellery boxes and eyeglass cases. She killed flies in her studio between the pages of her sketchbooks and called them the diaries of a serial killer.
In the summer, these diaries will be on display in a project called Entomological Encounters, inspired by insect research, as part of Uniarts Helsinki’s Research Pavilion in Venice. [...]