Locative media: Ratuatieasema Returns workshop

The deep-local Helsinki culture of mobility, systems and networks is manifested at the site of Rautatieasema (Railway Station). With it’s interior, exterior, surrounding subterranean public-spaces, it is a centrepoint of urban Finland; A cartographic and temporal framework for partings, convergences, paths and destinations, all wrapped up in objective data and personal story. The tangible, intangible, physical and informatic.. The static and mobile..

Acknowledging the recent contemporary past, the workshop aims to engage with the Central Railway Station site in Helsinki, and will begin with considerations upon what happened last time at the same site duringPixelACHE 2004. On that occasion, approximately 20 international media and performance artists, activists, archaeologists and researchers spent 5 days exploring overlaps in “capture-gathering” methods and site-documentations.

However, this time participants will be given a key to a locker in the railway station. What is found inside, will be something to begin with.

The locker contents will be starting points in the first 3 mornings, towards self-directed individual or collaborative activity during the rest of the workshop week.

Hence the reiteration of the Locative Media Workshop in the context of PixelACHE2006 focuses activity towards devised performance; to ethnographic, storytelling and interpretative approaches; to reiterations and representations.


A large portion of the scheduled workshop time will be dedicated to exploring the specific site, subterranean and surrounding area of the Rautatieasema. This site may be understood as a ‘boundary object’. A boundary object is interpreted by different communities, with an acknowledgement and discussion of these differences, that allows a shared understanding to be formed. It is a common point of reference for conversation; a means of coordination and alignment; a means of translation.

Several tools and platforms will be introduced in mini-workshop sessions and explored with the workshop participants, focusing upon recent mobile art-activism and interaction design projects:

IMPROVe is an aural architecture for socio-cultural exchange. Sonic realities of the everyday are improvised live in a non-linear mode. Local and remote audiences contribute and access open content. This focus will be coordinated by Richard Widerberg (UIAH Media lab), in collaboration with Åsa Ståhl and Kristina Lindström (å+k).

The Loca collective plan to experiment with a cluster of interconnected Bluetooth nodes in the urban Rautatieasema environment, to explore everyday surveillance, tracking digital bodies in physical space. This network platform will test the barriers the shifting boundaries between performative art practice, the event and data systems.

The latest mobile media software - Merkitys-Meaning will be introduced to participants by Mika Raento (Context) and John Evans (3eyes) at the workshop, providing context-enhanced ‘one-click-publishing’ to the popular online image-publishing platform Flickr.

Not to be forgotton but emphasised, the participants bring their body to the site of interest. Concerned with positioning, visibility and performance, we locate our physical being among others, negotiating the spatio-temporal context.

As part of this orientation the participants also bring their emotional and intellectual self to the site. Time, space and emotions are invested in fieldwork, connecting the personal, professional and political. Indeed it is difficult to disengage the situated and emboddied self. Those specific identity and context perspectives brought - age, gender, sexuality, history, nationality, class, politic - mingles with the stories, subjectivites, and histories of others present in the field. By documenting other places and the people within, the participants are also writing part of their own story in relation.

As part of the process of developing and expanding the locative media discourse, the workshop design aims to include the situated, the embodied and the temporal.


Thanos Chrysakis (GR/UK), Sarawut Chutiwongpeti (TH/FI), John Evans (UK/FI), Michail Galanakis (GR/FI), Maija Hirvanen (FI), Theo Humphries (UK), Mari Keski-Korsu (FI), Elina Latva (FI), Sophea Lerner (FI), Kristine Lindström (SE), Meiju Niskala (FI), Andrew Paterson (UK/FI), Melissa Paulsen (FI), Angela Piccini (UK), Mika Raento (FI), Ben Russell (UK), Åsa Ståhl (SE), Petri Taipali (FI), Richard Widerburg (SE/FI), Inari Virmakoski (FI).


Workshop program designed by Meiju Niskala (Media Lab UIAH) and Andrew Paterson (Media Lab UIAH/M-Cult/HIIT).

Locative media workshop in Helsinki is a part of PixelACHE 2006 Festival, organised by Piknik Frequency and Kiasma Theatre.

For further information contact: locative at pixelache.ac


During PixelACHE 2004, a locative media workshop held was held as the first event in the series of 6 ‘Trans-Cultural Mapping’ workshops initiated by RIXC Centre for New Media (Riga, Latvia). Each workshop had a specific focus on outskirts and interregional networking, in the context of an enlarged Europe. The Additional aim was to discover specific, deep and relevant layers of the local cultures, involving specific local communities in the process. For more information of what happened:

Locative Media Workshop.PixelACHE2004 or here

Locative media may be understood to mean media in which context is crucial, in that the media pertains to specific location and time, the point of spatio-temporal ‘capture’, dissemination or some point in between. The term locative media has also over the last couple of years been associated with mobility, collaborative mapping, and emergent forms of social networking.