Award-winning Finnish Student Exhibition at the Prague Quadrennial 2023

The Finnish student exhibition Suo, Silent, Disco has won a prestigious prize for the ‘Most Imaginative and Inventive Design in the Student Exhibition’ at the Prague Quadrennial of Performance Design and Space 2023 (PQ 2023). Held once every four years since 1967, the Prague Quadrennial explores the artistic areas of scenography, performance design and space.
Award ceremony at PQ2023 with nine people onstage
Award ceremony. Image by Andreas Skourtis

The Prague Quadrennial of Performance Design and Space 2023 welcomed nearly one hundred creative and curatorial teams from 59 countries and regions within the two main exhibitions; in total PQ 2023 hosted around 2,000 artists.

This was the third consecutive win for the Finnish Student Exhibition following a Gold Medal PQ 2015 for the Best Exposition in the Student Section and Best Student Exhibition Experience in PQ 2019. 

The award winners are Master's students in Costume Design (Aalto University, School of Art, Design and Architecture), and in Sound Design, Lighting Design and Design for the Performing Arts (Theatre Academy of the University of the Arts Helsinki). 

Creative team members: Hugo Enkenberg, Lyydia Johansson, Ruusa Johansson, Aino Juutilainen, Mirei Kato, Meme Korhonen, Pauli Kotilainen, Aku Lahti, Alina Pajula, Hilla Ruuska, Mikko Salminen, Timo Tikka, Ville Tolvanen, Joakim Udd, Outi Vedenpää and Aino Väisänen.

Curatorial team: Sofia Pantouvaki, Susanna Suurla (Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture), Kimmo Karjunen, Liisa Ikonen, Elina Lifländer, Tomi Humalisto, Jari Kauppinen, Tuomas Fränti and Jokke Heikkilä (Theatre Academy of the University of the Arts Helsinki).

The theme of this year's exhibition was Festival of the RARE. The Finnish Student Exhibition studied the topic from the perspective of the Finnish nature experience and endangered peatland environments. In the exhibition, visitors stepped into the centre of this audio-visual and holistic work and shared a rare and unique swamp experience together with the rest of the festival audience. 

The PQ Jury commentary on the awarded work: Utilising senses, costume and materiality this playful and charming exhibit invites participants to experience the physicality and sounds of walking through a Finnish swamp whilst asking us to consider the impact of humans on these precious and threatened ecosystems. 

Description of the work:

Why do we keep getting stuck? Suo, Silent, Disco is a piece that combines traces of the rare, typical and controversial Finnish suo (swamp, bog or peatland) into a light-hearted physical experiment. Participants are invited to share the playful and audiovisual space of the sticky unknown.

Suo, Silent, Disco was created through different experiences and ideas of suo landscapes, which cover almost a third of Finland’s land area. Although the piece approaches the theme from a playful and heartfelt point of view, the cultural and political aspects of suo areas are controversial. Suos act as great carbon sinks, but for decades they have been severely threatened by drainage and peat extraction. These human actions create huge emissions and damage ecosystems. Knowing all this, why do we keep getting stuck?

Suo, Silent, Disco was co-organised by the Theatre Academy of the University of the Arts Helsinki and the Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture. The work was sponsored by Studiotec Oy.

For more information:

Instagram: @pq23finland

See the original event page for more information

photo of a swamp with a neon green hockey helmet resting on the ground

Suo, Silent, Disco

Suo, Silent, Disco is the title of the installation that represents Finland in the Student Exhibition of the Prague Quadrennial 2023. The project is co-curated and co-organized by Aalto University School of Arts,

  • Published:
  • Updated:

Read more news

Jukka Pekola, kuva: Riitta Supperi, Suomen Kulttuurirahasto
Awards and Recognition Published:

Jukka Pekola receives Finnish Cultural Foundation award – ‘Quantum is of interest way beyond scientists or the science fiction world’

Professor Jukka Pekola receives the Finnish Cultural Foundation's award for his long-term contributions to quantum technology research and to solving challenges facing humanity.
A visual AI-generated sketch for urban development in Battersea district in London
Cooperation, Research & Art, Studies Published:

Architecture students use AI to design social innovations for London

The project combined qualitative evolutionary design and visual generative artificial intelligence, for the first time.
Sirje Liukko
Awards and Recognition Published:

Decorations of the President of the Republic to Sirje Liukko

Presidential Medal of Honour has been awarded to Planning Officer Sirje Liukko at the School of Chemical Engineering.
Mikko Alava ja kolme muuta tutkimusryhmän jäsentä kuvattuna teknisen laitteen äärellä.
Research & Art Published:

Significant grants for science from the Finnish Cultural Foundation

A total of thirty individuals and research groups from Aalto University received grants from the Finnish Cultural Foundation for science and art. Professors Harri Lipsanen and Zhipei Sun and their team, were awarded a large grant to develop electronic components mimicking the structure and function of the human brain. Among the grantees is also Professor Mikko Alava, whose team is developing water-resistant foams as substitutes for plastic using AI-based methods.