Page updated 22.12.2019

An expert in the field of art strengthens interaction

– One of the tasks of artists is to find ways to respond to societal challenges, says artist and developer Krista Petäjäjärvi. The tools for strengthening your competence can be provided by TUAS’ Master School studies.

– In fact, I’m not very familiar with these surroundings, Krista Petäjäjärvi laughs on the stage of Köysiteatteri. – Deep down I’m more of a performance artist.

We’ve toured the premises of TUAS Arts Academy and ended up in the middle of theatre props. Outside the room, under the eyes of puppets, dance students are practicing. The higher education institution, in which art is omnipresent, attracted Krista to complete Master School studies in Turku. She had previously graduated as a Drama Instructor.

– My aim was to obtain a Master’s degree and strengthen my expertise. I also wanted to get a degree, which would naturally continue my own competence path. And here it was, at TUAS’ Arts Academy.

Together towards own expertise

The world is undergoing constant changes. The Master studies in the field of culture respond to this challenge by providing the student with abilities to act as a part of a versatile environment and team.

You recognize your own strength with the help of learning and development tasks and group work.

– In the field of art, working is often very independent. This is why especially collegial discussions played an important part in my learning. The Master studies provide a good opportunity to focus on large professional issues, says Krista.

The studies provide tools to develop and understand artistic processes also in a scientific context. Krista considers this to enrich not only her studies but also the research on art.

– During the Master studies, my relationship with the traditions, phenomena and different roots of art was strengthened. The studies also forced me to enter the scientific discussion. This was challenging but important, she states.   

Art and social impact hand in hand

In the Master studies, the focus is especially on recognizing your own competence. Krista says that she found in herself an expert, who promotes the interaction between art and organizations.

– I feel I’m a bridge-builder, who combines art and social development. On the other hand, I also act as an artist in work communities, which are aiming at change, she specifies.

During the studies, Krista started as a Regional Artist at Arts Promotion Centre Finland. Her thesis handles the development work she has done in the role of the Regional Artist.

– It is an ambitious thesis about how the expertise of an artist is conveyed. A topic on which much has not been written.

The dream of society is a gate to opportunities

Back to TUAS Arts Academy and the present day. How does an artist, who has completed a Master’s degree, see her expertise to respond to the challenges of today and the needs of cultural working life?

– Claes Andersson has said that art is a dream of society. I also think that through art, we can process the crises we encounter more comprehensively through art. Creative thinking is necessary for the survival of humans. Right now, the climate crisis requires new kind of thinking and action, she contemplates.

As the thoughts go towards the future, the force of doing together gets more emphasis in her speech. 

– I want to create a future where there is courage, ability and freedom to do things differently. Once we give up our rigid formula and seek new forms of cooperation, we can find a deeper meaning to the world, Krista crystallizes.