Mirja Hiltunen | Lecturer in Art Education
My artistic practice has involved directing numerous live art events and projects relating to the northern environment and putting together exhibitions. I am especially interested in art education research projects conducted in Finnish Lapland investigating the possibilities for interaction between the villages of the North and modern art as well as ways to enact a communal form of art education.
Artistic activity has the potential to bring to light and actively develop the specific characteristics and strengths of the environment and the community. The starting points of community art are the socio-cultural environment and traditions of the physical community. Doing art together can provide the people of a community – children, the elderly, artists and art enthusiasts, people from different cultural backgrounds and from different areas of work such as social and health care, education and tourism – with an opportunity to meet, share their skills and contribute meaningfully to their own lives and to their environment. It can also enable a community to take notice of forgotten or neglected issues or groups in its midst.