The Art-Eco research group consists of artists, philosophers and educators as well as a multidisciplinary group of dance animateurs as fellow researchers, consisting of professionals in different areas.

Raisa Foster, Ph.D. – Project Leader

Dr. Raisa Foster (b. 1976) is an independent researcher/artist/educator. She completed her Ph.D. in 2012 at the University of Tampere, Finland.   She graduated as a dance animateur in 2006 from the University of Melbourne, Australia.

Foster has created her own artistic/pedagogical method Tanssi-innostaminen®, a pedagogical method The Pedagogy of Recognition as well as an art-based research method Eragraphy.

Foster is currently interested in combining different artistic and more traditional qualitative research methods in her practice as an artist/researcher/educator and establishing her unique approach to performance art.


How can the holistic awareness of empathetic-ecological humanity be supported?

Jussi, Mäkelä, MA (fine arts and education)

Jussi Mäkelä (b. 1973) is a researcher, an artist and a teacher. His master’s thesis in education (University of Tampere 2002) was about Kierkegaard’s existential philosophy. After graduating as a teacher Mäkelä started to focus more on art and art education, ending up doing an art-based hermeneutical research as a master’s thesis in art education (Aalto University 2010). Mäkelä is interested in art-based phenomenological research as a method of understanding the complex relationship between an individual and the surrounding world. In his PhD project Mäkelä is scrutinizing Joseph Beuys’s social sculpture through the perspectives of space, sculpture and freedom, thus pondering the human-world relationship. The main questions in his research deal with the fundamental responsibility of a free creative human being. Mäkelä’s art-based œuvre is built on various artistic techniques including sculptures, installations, paintings and small conceptual compositions.