I look through an eye piece lens of a microscope. I’m not sure what magnification I’m using at the moment. I’ve lost my sense of scale and I don’t understand the size of the living beings I’m looking at. Every time I change the magnification or the position of the sample I see something new and unexpected appearing in front of me. Even though I know that I’m seemingly in control of these few thousand organisms I collected for my test shoot, what I’m experiencing makes me feel very small.

My artistic research Scaling - An Attitude To Artistic Practice, is made mainly through audiovisual experiments, which can work as individual pieces but are also connected and blended together through the narrative of my research. My online Vivarium works as a platform for presenting my archive of the material produced during the research but also as a virtual space for exploring the interaction of the different elements I’m dealing with.

In the beginning of my research, I was treating the idea of scale and scaling in a very functional manner. I believed that scale based and spatial thinking could be used for building immersive narratives and zooming into a character or a story. Gradually through my research the thematic meanings of scale and zooming-in/out became clear; they were no longer only structures for narration but also the content for my artistic work and a way of looking.

The most crucial questions for my research can be explored in the context of cinema but also on a much more personal and existential level:

  • What makes us change our perspective to see the peculiar in something familiar?
  • How close do we have to get or how much distance do weneed in order to relate to something or someone?
  • What can it mean to be too close to what one is looking at?
  • What are the limits of our perception?
  • What happens to us when we realize our size in relation to society or nature?


(research installation)

The installation is founded on the simple idea of a very direct scale based switch, but in its simplicity it encapsulates some of the core elements of my research. Wanderers is a monument which main purpose it is to remind us about the significance of the things that have a huge impact on our lives even though we don’t normally notice them or pay attention to them.


(experimental documentary, 9’)

In a small village in the Finnish countryside there’s a TV-tower that resonates in the wind, in three different frequencies. This landmark plays a central role in Rook, a short documentary video, exploring ideas of scale, distance and perception through a dialogue between two different perspectives in two different times, connected through the physical space and the family relation of the main characters.



Lengte (min.)



Mikko Keskiivari

Language  Finnish
Country of production  Finland

Microscopy and sound design Mikko Keskiivari
Institutional support Ewa Gogola
Mentoring Marcie Begleiter, Aneta Lesnikovska, Eyal Sivan
special thanks to the Netherlands Cancer Institute

Director, cinematographer, sound designer, editor Mikko Keskiivari
Performer Tuomo Keskiivari
Runner Leena Keskiivari-Rantanen
Mentoring Marcie Begleiter, Aneta Lesnikovska, Eyal Sivan
special thanks to Jussi Tulander

een project van
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