The Nonhuman Island

2016 – 2017

The Nonhuman Island was a two-year performative research project that approached nonhuman beings as potential performance makers. In the project nonhuman beings were considered both as collaborators and as independent performers and performance creators. The project asked how can performances happen in nonhumans’ terms, and what kind of performance structures and methods nonhuman beings propose and generate. What kind of changes of perception do these kind of performances create in human beings? Who and what are the audience of nonhuman performances? Can performance happen without any presence or intervention of humans?

The project consisted of three phases. In the first phase, nonhuman beings were approached as equal collaborators in performance making; in the second phase, the working group asked can performances be initiated by nonhumans; and in the third phase, the performances happened (or did not happen) without any human interference.

The research process was shared with audience in monthly events, which included discussions, performances and sharing of working methods and exercises. Events were open for anyone.

The project culminated in a two day seminar in May 2017. The seminar included presentations of artists working with nonhuman performance, discussions and two performances.

Project website:

Concept and coordination: Saara Hannula
Working group: Teo Ala-Ruona, Saara Hannula, Luka, Minja Mertanen, Linda Priha, Kati Raatikainen, and other (non)human beings
Production: Reality Research Center