Mika Savela

I'm a curator, architect, editor and designer based in Helsinki.

email mika at mikasavela.com IG @mikasavela

My creative practice bridges visual culture, critical architectural and urban concepts – the off-context, margins, representation, and approaches between the historical, the modern – and the digital.

I'm a co-founder at Selim Projects, a Helsinki-based contemporary platform for editorial / curatorial / cultural / visual / spatial projects, together with architect Henrik Drufva. We collaborate with other creatives, friends and like-minded organisations on publications, research, visual design, concepts, curating and exhibitions.

My background is in architecture and urban design. I've graduated from the Aalto University and later completed my Ph.D. at the The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) My research has explored the co-development of curatorial practice, exhibition histories, global biennialization, emerging urban research tendencies and the contemporary and historical narratives of Chinese urbanization and institution-building. At CUHK, I also contributed to the teaching, exhibitions and publications of the M.Sc. in Urban Design program, including projects at the SZ/HK Bi-City Biennale for Urbanism \ Architecture, and the Venice Biennale. I have also taught at the Aalto University's School of Arts, Design and Architecture, as well as guest lecturing and taking part in design reviews internationally.

In the recent years I've worked in a number of capacities and projects. I was appointed as curator for MOPCAP 2015-16 program with the MOP Foundation, and as Mellon Researcher (2016-17) at the Canadian Centre for Architecture's (CCA) project Photography and/for Architecture. In 2017 I was a laureate for the Future Architecture Platform as well as the Forecast Platform in Berlin. For the 3-year term 2018-2020 I served as editor-in-chief at ark the Finnish Architectural Review, developing the the magazine's editorial direction and print and digital renewal process. For 2021 I received a grant from the National Council for Architecture and Design.

Currently, I am working with national architectural policy and public art advisory at Arts Promotion Centre Finland (Taike). For 2023-25 I am also a member of the Finnish State Art Commission.