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School of Arts, Design and Architecture awarded promoters of creative skills

In the Annual Review of the school altogether eleven prizes were awarded.
Cilla Lönnqvist, Jenni Haukio ja Matti Alahuhta. Kuva: Jaakko Kahilaniemi
Cilla Lönnqvist, Jenni Haukio and Matti Alahuhta. Photo: Jaakko Kahilaniemi

The Annual Review of the School of Arts, Design and Architecture took place on 11 February. The meeting examined the school’s and the departments’ results and essential achievements in 2018, granted the Pallas Athene Prizes and announced the School of Arts, Design and Architecture Alumna of the Year.

An exceptional year

"The year 2018 was exceptional for the School of Arts, Design and Architecture. For the first time, an international ranking placed us among the world’s ten leading art and design universities by granting us the ninth position", states Anna Valtonen, Dean of the School of Arts, Design and Architecture.

"I believe that the future will offer us increasingly interesting opportunities. We aim at designing unique, multidisciplinary projects that will provide Finland with novel, creative capacity and business activity. Our relocation to Otaniemi has provided us with the potential to facilitate closer and more streamlined collaboration in Aalto and its ecosystem."

Three Pallas Athene Prizes awarded this year

The Pallas Athene Prize has been awarded every second year since 2001 as a recognition for particularly distinguished work that promotes aesthetic values and creative skills. Pallas Athene Prizes were awarded to Jenni Haukio, Matti Alahuhta and Anita Lehikoinen.

In her position as a poet, literature expert and the wife of the current president of Finland, Master of Political Science Jenni Haukio has actively highlighted the role and meaning of aesthetic culture in the society. Jenni Haukio has emphasized talented young artists’ significance to Finland and promoted Aalto University’s high-grade, distinctive and internationally competitive education and research in the field of design. Haukio has also supported sustainable Finnish design know-how with her attire choices. The dress worn by Mrs Haukio at the Independence Day Reception of 2018 was realised by the School of Arts, Design and Architecture’s Textile Design students who used the Ioncell technology developed jointly by Aalto University and the University of Helsinki.

Doctor of Science (Technology) Matti Alahuhta played a central role in the initiation of Aalto University. As the first chairperson of the Aalto University Board, Alahuhta participated in remodelling the operating methods and structures of the Finnish society and in laying the foundation for progressive education in Finland. Alahuhta has acted as an advocate of creativity and renewal in Finnish companies and societal institutions. Alahuhta’s contribution in empowering creativity, innovativeness and customer-orientation as forces that renew and develop the society has been significant.

Anita Lehikoinen, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Education and Culture, was a crucial actor for the implementation and stimulation of the Finnish university reform. According to Lehikoinen, the societal role of universities is not restricted to the development of education and production of research data, but they act as independent educators unaffected by the society’s changes. Lehikoinen has also highlighted the significance and value of internationality and humanism and demanded the operators in the education field to actively participate and take stands in the social discourse. As the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Education and Culture, Lehikoinen has contributed to maintaining culture, art and creativity in an important role in the society.

Alumna of the Year title awarded to a reformer of streaming services

The Alumna of the Year, Cilla Lönnqvist, has acted as the Head of YLE Areena since 2015. She has forged a long career in the service of the Finnish Broadcasting Company YLE as a developer of digital solutions. Lönnqvist is widely recognised as a professional of digital services whose know-how has supported YLE’s development and enabled the broadcasting company to retain its status as a remarkable part of Finnish life.

Already during her studies, Lönnqvist showed open enthusiasm towards problem solving and the study of new phenomena. She studied in the University of Art and Design Helsinki's Media Lab’s New Media degree programme in 1999–2001 – a period during which the university studied and developed interactive television which would enable anyone to publish text or audiovisual content.

First Aalto ARTS Artistic Activity Award

To honour the outstanding artistic work of lecturer at the Department of Media, photographer Niko Luoma, School of Arts, Design and Architecture awards him with the newly established Aalto ARTS Artistic Activity Award. Luoma’s abstract photographic works have been extensively featured in high-level international art forums.

His photographs are found in notable Finnish public collections including Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art, Helsinki Art Museum and EMMA - Espoo Museum of Modern Art as well as numerous collections abroad. In 2018 only, his work has been exhibited in ARCO Madrid, Paris Photo, PHOTOFAIRS San Francisco, Chart Copenhagen, Artissima Torino, and Gallery Bryce Wolkowitz in New York – to mention a few.

Dissertation Award to interactive design practices on digital cultural heritage

The best doctoral dissertation of the year was Sanna Marttila's Infrastructuring for Cultural Commons. Marttila’s investigation is a significant contribution that promotes wider public engagement with digital cultural heritage. Using theories from Science and Technology studies (STS), Computer supported collaborative work (CSCW) and Participatory Design, (PD) her thesis brings to advancement in design as a practice and as academic discipline and demonstrates design’s capability to support interdisciplinary thinking and discussion.

The basic criteria for Aalto University dissertation awards are academic quality, impact and originality. Each school rewards the top 10% of the approved doctoral dissertations in the school. In 2018, the school had 14 new Doctors of Art.

We aim at designing unique, multidisciplinary projects that will provide Finland with novel, creative capacity and business activity."

Anna Valtonen, Dean

Teaching awards

Anne Tervo, Department of Architecture

Anne Tervo has taken the responsibility of the bachelor thesis at the Department of Architecture in an active and successful way. Within a short period of time she has managed to improve results. Tervo has got exceptionally good feedback from the students both for the practical organization of the courses and for the personal support and guidance to the individual students.

Andrew Best-Dunkley, Department of Art

Andrew Best-Dunkley has excellent student feedback and has demonstrated a deep commitment to students. Best has worked tirelessly to bring his insight, skills, and vision to students from across the university.

Ramia Mazé, Department of Design

Ramia Mazé is the head of education at the Department of Design and puts her whole heart into developing processes and supporting programme heads, teachers and students at the department.

Oskar Franzén, Department of Film, TV and Scenography

Franzén is a dedicated and engaged teacher, who is active in education developing. He has gained excellent feedback from his students and he is highly respected by his colleagues as well. Franzén is also known for his exellent co-working skills, and as an active user and developer of the digital tools for learning and education.

Tarja Nieminen, Department of Media

Lecturer Tarja Nieminen has received really excellent feedback on her teaching in the BA program in Visual Communication Design from her students. She has also been extremely active in promotion and forging of international collaborations and in gaining funding for these.

For further information:

Dean Anna Valtonen, Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture, [email protected], +358 50 5922 317

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