Maunula Staircase

Staircases are potential urban meeting points, where people often just pass by each other. In Maunula Staircase, this space is taken over for encounters and dialogue.

Maunula Staircase is a 6-hour-long discussion event on the collaborative futures of the neighbourhood. Participants from local groups and communities - young and older, those working as volunteers, at offices or without work shared their experience in the discussion.  

The event pays tribute to Maunula's long collaborative tradition, aiming to open up  perspectives to new forms of collectivity as global and local changes affect the neighbourhood. What could community, care and democracy mean for Maunula in the 2020s?  Can we find ways for the various groups to engage with each other and commit to collective action?

The discussion was recorded on video at Maunula house on November 26, 2019, with a live stream to follow online and at the wathcing space at the house.

A brief description of the talks and links to sections of the discussion. See also the Finnish version on our Maunula website.

The discussion started with Maunula's local democracy process and open-access spaces, and continued with thoughts about volunteer work and the situation of senior citizens.
Emilia Palonen / moderator Iida Nissinen
Lauri Seutu & Emilia Palonen
Elina Juvonen & Lauri Seutu
Minna Tarkka & Elina Juvonen
Mervi Leivo & Minna Tarkka

Next topics revolved around housing and homelessness, the gangs of old Maunula and the importance of forests, especially the Central Park, to the residents.
Aiju Salminen & Mervi Leivo / moderator Emmi Komlosi
Ari 'Huli' Hulden & Aiju Salminen
Dan & Ari 'Huli' Hulden
Anna Asunta & Dan
Matti Kaskenaho & Anna Asunta

From themes of loneliness and care, the focus shifted from care to the local food ecosystem, and then to experiences of change and safety by both young and old.
Tuire & Matti Kaskenaho / moderator Jemina Lindholm
Ramona&Hanna & Tuire
Pete&Jerry & Ramona&Hanna
Kale Kaivola & Pete&Jerry
Sylvi&Alma & Shailije & Kale Kaivola

In the section in English, an international group of participants discussed different people coming together, language barriers and the situation of immigrants and refugees.
Shailije & Sylvi&Alma / moderator Vishnu Vardhani (en)
Babak Arzani & Shailije (en)
Renata Gaudio & Babak Arzani (en)
Suvi&Abdi&Emil & Renata Gaudiaó (en)

The final round of talks meeting places for the young and the old, the future of the neighbourhood and the importance of dialogue - both speaking and listening - between different people.
Aino Timonen & Suvi&Abdi&Emil / moderator Iida Nissinen
Aisha&Fartun & Aino Timonen
Hannu Kurki & Aisha&Fartun
Hannu Kurki & Jeanne van Heeswijk

Based on the talks, a special annex to the Maunulan Sanomat local newspaper 1/2020 was edited by Minna Tarkka and Iida Nissinen, with illustrations by Aiju Salminen.

Maunula Staircase
discussion event at Maunula House, Helsinki
November 26, 2019 12:00-18:00

Event team
Jeanne van Heeswijk, Iida Nissinen, Emmi Komlosi, Jemina Lindholm, Vishnu Vardhani, Minna Tarkka

Babak Arzani, Anna Asunta, Abdirahman Fahie, Renata Gaudio, Ari Hulden, Tuire Häkkinen, Elina Juvonen, Kale Kaivola, Matti Kaskenaho, Petri Kesonen, Hannu Kurki, Mervi Leivo, Emilia Palonen, Hanna Peltola, Jerry Rainakari, Suvi Ripatti, Emil Salmenkylä, Aiju Salminen, Shailaje Shailavan, Lauri Seutu, Minna Tarkka, Aino Timonen, Ramona Valentin, Alma Westerholm with Aisha, Dan, Fartun and Sylvi.

Media team
Kalle Kuisma, Eero Yli-Vakkuri with Pauli Niskanen, Helga Kovalchuk, Jani Tuominen and Merja Haakana / Maunula-house media workshop

Produced by
m-cult in cooperation with Maunula house and Publics

The project is an iteration of The City Staircase originally developed by Jeanne van Heeswijk and BAK, basis voor actuele kunst, Utrecht in 2019 as part of the Public Faculty series of dialogues in public space. The event is produced by m-cult in collaboration with Publics and Maunula communities. It is made possible by support from Helsinki City and the Kone Foundation (Jeanne van Heeswijk's artist residency at Lauttasaari manor).