Becoming, 2020

According to Laura Gustafsson and Terike Haapoja, makers of the film Becoming, we should not speak of a climate crisis but of a crisis of humanity. They see re-evaluating the concept of ‘humanity’ as a political necessity now that humans are destroying the natural environment, and with it the basic
conditions for all life.

‘How to become human’ is the central issue of this three-hour video installation, based on interviews filmed in various Finnish landscapes, in Sápmi – the land of the Sámi in the northernmost part of Norway, Sweden, Finland and Russia – and in New York City. ‘What emerging forms of humanity and ways of being should be nurtured so that they can grow and create a just, sustainable future?’ The 37 people interviewed include artists, poets, thinkers, activists and children who all strive for a more equal and diverse society.

‘The film does not present an unambiguous utopia of what the future world should look like. Rather, it is a place where people think together, where encounters take place between people, between people and the landscape, and between people and their thoughts.’

To accompany the film, in collaboration with the interviewees, Gustafsson&Haapoja made the Bud Book, Manual for Earthly Living, a publication based on the question: If you were to create the world anew, what kind of manual would you need?


Laura Gustafsson (1983, Finland) is an author, script-writer and playwright based in Helsinki. In her work she aims to present unforeseen perspectives on topics ranging from motherhood to the end of the world (as we know it). Terike Haapoja (1974, Finland) is a visual artist based in New York. Her work investigates the existential and political boundaries of our world, raising questions about how different structures of exclusion and discrimination function as foundations for identity and culture. Together, Gustafsson&Haapoja explore problems that arise from the anthropocentric worldview of Western traditions, seeking to open paths for ethical forms of coexistence between species. Their long-term collaboration manifests itself in exhibitions, stage work and texts. |


Becoming, 2020

3-channel video installation, 180’00”

Sound design: Pinja Mustajoki

Music: Mercedes Bentso, Hilja Grönfors,

Anna Morottaja, Tommi Mäki

Sound recording: Satu Kankkonen, Mikko

Virmajoki, Maura Korhonen, Kira DeCoudres

Co-production: Helsinki Art Museum HAM and Fantomatico

Supported by AVEK Mediarata