Art & Science

HAT-group’s first Art and Science collaboration -workshop calls for students of arts and sciences from Helsinki University and Art University to gather together, develop and try out methods of art-science collaboration and to develop novel ways of grasping complex phenomena in nature and society. 

Did you know that art can also be a form of research? Or that creativity, sense of metaphors and subjective reflection can be needed also in scientific work? What would we understand of Darwin’s evolutionary theory without the metaphor of branching trees of descendance? Could we understand the nature of light without the metaphor of wavelength? Science and art are both humankind’s methods of relating with and understanding the reality we live in. What then is the difference between scientific and artistic research? And can they ever be combined?

Scientists may reveal ground-breaking and potentially worldview-shattering new aspects of the universe, but without proper artistic and philosophical processing, the meaning of these discoveries for individual human remains impersonal and vague. The importance of collaboration between sciences and arts in building our worldview has also become a common topic in the calls of many funders, who want to support scientific analysis and artistic processing of the same complex topics happening in parallel. Despite this motivation, collaborative combining scientific and artistic approaches is not always easy, because education for best practises or established platforms for such collaboration remain hard to find.  

As part of HAT-group’s aim in developing new methods of describing and newways of talking about complex natural phenomena, Hat-group is organising an Art and Science collaboration -workshop, which calls for students of arts and sciences from Helsinki University and Art University to gather together, develop and try out methods of art-science collaboration and use these to approach ambitious questions about the reality we live in.  

The workshop is organised as part of the multidisciplinary research project “Evolution in Nature and Society” (, that aims at developing new ways of talking about complex natural phenomena. The workshop aims at providing students with tools to research and gain understanding about complex natural phenomena, such as time, energy, gravity, ecological or social networks, chaos or evolution, by using methods of both art and science, focusing on causes, consequences, shapes, structures and subjective meanings of things. 

The three-day workshop consists of lectures, short exercises and a small course project done in pairs of one science and one art student. The lectures will summarise principles of scientific and artistic research, and how possible methods for collaboration between these lines of research. We will also invite a few speakers who have been part of more or less successful art-science collaborations to share their experiences on the process. In this workshop we approach art-science collaboration through methods of “equal research”, where a scientist and an artist set out to map out some pre-agreed object of interest, researching this pattern/phenomenon in parallel and in continuous dialogue. At the end of the workshop, the results of the small pair-work course project will be presented and discussed together with the researchers and artists associated with the HAT-project, with the aim that students will get feedback to help them to apply for funding for an art-science collaboration in the future.  

The three-day workshop will take place in Kaisaniemi Botanical gardens on Wednesday to Friday 28.-30.9.2022. The workshop will be in English. If you are a master-level student of sciences or arts and interested in attending, please contact Aura Raulo,