Enter the Landscape
and the landscape enters the body.
Feet in felt boots, we walk softly in the snow.
With the sensitivity of animal paws, reading the forms underfoot.
Here a crust that may hold the body with a gentle transfer of weight
…here a stable icy ridge… and then a sudden softness giving way to knee
depth snow. This was the experience of walking to Malla on Sunday.
Malla the mountain drawing us over the frozen lake, to her shores of
gnarled Birch.
With waist deep snow so soft you can surrender all the weight
of this world. The pores of our skin meet little of the wind,
wrapped and layered in wool, then high tech plastics, then wool again.
Our outer-shell is animal.
It was an aesthetic choice for the filming, not to be plastic coated,
but underneath it filters the wind so we can stay out in the Arctic
weather some time. The texture of the wool knit gathers snow as we roll.
Snow becomes our outer layer of skin, creasing into small clumps at the
backs of our knees, hanging on our jumpers in reptilian patterns.
Underneath all these layers something else is at play.
Other spaces are opening.

Each day after porridge, we clear the lounge room for movement.
Titta guides us with some kinaesthetic reminders and plays music
to support the images. We move with awareness of the spaces in our bodies,
between the ribs, the spine, the jaw and hips.
As we play with these awarenesses they grow.
It feels as if, through these spaces, the Arctic landscape is slipping in.

A snow covered expanse between the ribs, subtile light reflecting
from the bones, extending the contours of the self.
These kinaesthetic reminders are part of the Skinner Releasing Technique,
the somatic movement practice that brought us together.
Deniz Soyarslan from Turkey, Titta Court from Northern Finland and
myself from Sweden/Australia, all the way to Kilpisjärvi in the Finnish
Arctic. We move inside in preparation for our outdoors.
Dressing in our many layers is quite an ordeal,
it’s a sauna in the clothes before we make it out in the cold.
Our woolen pants with so many layers under looks like we all have
nappy bums, all in grey wool we are the three teddy bears.
And then we put on our masks. Full of holes, white linen stuffed
like bone, shaped like bone. Hips, ribs and lung.
Seeing through the heart’s eye, through the skeletal spaces.

But today our masks stayed right here in the window.
We didn’t go out until the evening blue hour,
for a snow shoe shuffle and lay on the lake.
The storm that began yesterday continued through the night and day.
We heard the main road is cut off and the tractor of the Biological
Station, where we are in residence,
burst a tire yesterday and they are waiting for a new part.
Our driveway is a standing wave form and the car
we came in has been reshaped, snow-scaped.
Our windows are painted in dappled patterns and folds of snow.
The shapes and spaces evolving throughout the day.
Today we moved inside allot, left the cameras untouched.
The weather is the true director of this project.

And finally, here's the tower we built during our residency in February,
photographed by the station cooks during melting process in March.

For more blog entries, images and Deniz's text in Turkish please visit

still sensing dust and since some months other air related data for sonification via analog modular synthesizers, using arduino for translation of sensor data into analog control voltages to interfer into modulation groups of the analog sound engine.

last days visualization layer implemented – analog composite video direct from the modular rack.

direct visualization of sound generated by “air to air” setup:
during setup the idea arose to visualize the sound output of the “air to air” modular synthesizer setup, as there was still the video tool sitting in the modular rack….

air to air



Plankton from under the ice in Kilpisjärvi Lake

Over January and February 2015, Charli Clark has been carrying out field research in the sub-arctic lakes of Finland, Kilpisjärvi being one of them. During her time at Kilpisjärvi, Charli focused her attention on collecting plankton from under the Lake’s ice to understand how to identify these minute creatures and how best to use the equipment. This is the start of a collaboration with a marine scientist to increase awareness of the importance of the oceans, and lakes, to the development of human culture. Below is an expanded explanation of the on going project, that began in January and will continue through out the year, with field visits to coastal towns, exhibitions and workshops concerned with engaging people with the importance of the wild water within their localities.

Plankton from under the ice in Kilpisjärvi Lake

Catch Your Breath 2015,

Catch Your Breath is a collaboration between artist, Charli Clark and marine biologist Lydia Bach to examine the importance of phytoplankton in the world’s oceans, in relation to being human. Human agency, the capacity of us to act in this world, is affected and enabled by many non-human agents and phytoplankton is one of them.

Phytoplankton are single celled algae found in the upper layers of the oceans. Collectively, they produce over 50% of the world’s oxygen annually. Not only is this oxygen imperative to our existence, phytoplankton also acts as a carbon sink, taking it deep into the sea. The phytoplankton species we are focusing on is the coccolithophore Emiliania huxleyi, a single celled species, made of carbonate plates, with a global population of about 70 billion trillion cells scattered across the world ocean, and currently adapted to most of Earth’s marine environments. Above the ocean surface, the remains of this species become chalk, limestone and marble, shaping places we know and identify with, forming and defining some of the culturally important landscapes of today, i.e. the White Cliffs of Dover.

Climate change is altering the occurrence, form and shape Emiliania, with consequences that are difficult to predict. Through a series of ‘experiments’, ‘Catch Your Breath’ will explore and engage with the importance of phytoplankton in this changing world, understanding it as the base of the food chain fueling most marine ecosystem independent of humanity, but also with direct relation to culture, life and further more for us, breath.

‘Catch Your Breath’ is being developed as one of the artist and scientist pairs in Paper Makers: Bringing science to life through art. For more information about this project or the other Paper Maker pairs follow this link

My residency with Ars Bioarctica runs from November 23rd until December 21st (winter soltice) 2014

My project ‘A Polar Night Study’ has been informed by my fascination with sleep science and circadian rhythm entrainment.  For near on 28 days I have been engaged in a performative ‘forced desynchrony’ study of my own body clock. Residing at the Kilpisjarvi Biological Station,  I have been running on a 28 hour cycle of 9 hours 20 minute for sleep and 18 hours 40 minutes per subjective ‘day’. Using the polar night’s long hours of darkness (and hence deprivation of the body’s major exogenous zeitgeber- sunlight) as a clean slate against which to tinker with the machinery of my own circadian rhythm I have harnessed my out-of-step wake time to explore Kilpisjarvi’s unique environment from multiple temporal perspectives. A full explanation of my project can be found on my website along with the more detailedproject blog.

In my adventures into all the 24 hours I have come to learn so much about the polar night and this unique Arctic environment in which it thrives. I have hiked up Saana, Pikku-Malla and Salmivaara…

I have discovered what it’s like to go running in -18C and stood in the wilderness and begun to see how the time scales of all bodies here, water, earth, sky and animal oscillate about each other at different frequencies and how this makes every hour unique…

I have learned about the sounds (and safety) of lake ice expanding and contracting.

I have seen seen how all different types of light shape the complex nature of the polar night- moon, sun. aurora and man-made.

Through research and conversation I have discovered how others change and cope with the dark; how reindeer don’t appear to have a true circadian rhythm and how, in turn, their herders harbour their own unique sleep/wake cycle. In short I have been lucky enough in my project to live and experience these and so many more things that make this place so fascinating, while simultaneously illuminating the fact that I have merely scratched the surface of my subject.

A full explanation of my project can be found on my website along with the more detailed project blog.

I was the first time in Kilpisjärven residence and I would like to mention that the biological station provides the perfect setting for ideation and work.

October 11, 2014, River, Malla Strict Nature Reserve

In Kilpisjärvi you get the feeling that you are separate from the modern society, but on the other hand  you realize that the “exhaust” is apparent. In daily life difference between Kilpisjärvi and Helsinki is a significant.

October 11, 2014, Stone, Malla Strict Nature Reserve

Essentially, I came to the residence in working on my upcoming The Last Beach exhibition in Rovaniemi, but fortunately I have a time also working in collaboration with other artists. We did other artists, with a number of interesting excursions Kilpisjärven nearby areas.

October 13, 2014, Night, The station, on the beach

October 5, 2014 near the station
While recording grass and other plants, a moth landed nearby.
The link below goes to the streaming video, Moth, Grass, Wind.
I saw only a few moths after this cold and windy day. 
All work is © 2014   BMI and all images are from video stills
Birch and Lake
On a very windy day, I attached a transducer to a twig on the tree
and also to the birch bark.  Link below goes to the streaming video:
Brook at Malla, with Carbon Fiber Rod and Ice Forming
The carbon Fiber rod is picking up the sound of the ice
forming and also records harmonics from the wind.
Link below goes to  the Streaming Video:

We went to little Malla this morning. I did sound field recordings and underwater video recording tests, I will use the footage for the Documentary I’m directing during my stay in Kilpisjarvi for the ARCTIC2014.COM project!

the leash of the Camera frosted almost instantly outside of water..

We – my husband and son and I, are enjoying the stay in Kilpisjärvi. We are walking in the mornings and playing with our son Hugo. When he is sleeping, I work on my installation art. I am experimenting and making drafts for reindeer sculptures that will be part of my exhibition in Aine Art Museum, Tornio, in March 2015.

Reindeer art is something I have previously written about. The exhibition in Aine Art Museum is going to be my own contribution to this controversial field!

Maria Huhmarniemi


Yesterday I was out in the tundra, tunturi, and marvelling at the rolling landscape and misty backdrop of fells beyond, it seemed almost barren, where each element stood out by contrast, from little frogs to flowing water leading to a waterfall… All the way along I was admiring the splashes of yellows, oranges and reds of the ground cover – e.g. in Bilberry / Mustikka (leaves go bright red) and low shrubs – spread out and sometimes blending together, and when you look up close, the groundcover is also now full of berries!

Fall colours in the tundra

Part of most of my days are spent carrying out various tests with the natural materials I have collected, small samples from nearby and along my hiking routes. In the case of berries I’ve found, some were familiar, but in two cases I was berry confused. For example thus the correction on my first post – as it turns out, after having a chat in the Biological Station, what I had collected in fact was Dwarf Cornel / Ruohokanukka, which is growing all over here (where there are trees), it’s berries bright red and leaves now turning dark red, contributing wonderfully to fall colours on the ground, maaruska. Also, the test of eating a little red berry, and tasting the sourness, confirmed that it was indeed Lingonberry / Puolukka (as opposed to Bearberry / Sianpuolukka, looking extremely similar).


In working with these samples, I’m interested in using also tools that have a connection with this environment. For example today I put together a brush, using driftwood (from the lake shore) and Cottongrass (found in the tundra), along with regular thread, creating an implement which can also be used on the other end for a hard tip. I tested both ends with charcoal (collected from different fire pits), using a flat side of a rock, first rubbing on the charcoal then mixing in some water and applying this to paper.

Testing the brush with charcoal

For more artist information, please see my website: scaldn.net