Hanna-Maija Pääkkönen

dance artist / choreographer / phd

Selected Works



A duet and an exploration of movement for two diverse dancers.

Chorepgraphy: Hanna-Maija Pääkkönen

Dance: Alejandro Flores Monroy, Lyylia Koivuniemi

Decent Women


Decent Women is a collaboration of two artists; Hanna-Maija Pääkkönen and Katriina Haikala. Both women, feminists, mothers and entrepreneurs who explore the space allowed for women in the society within the very narrow concept of ‘decency’.

The artists map out the space where women are seen as  ‘decent’ and therefore accepted and valued in society. The interplay of dance and drawing brings to light the rules, contradictions and restrictions imposed on women, underlined by questions of power and agency.

The artists explore the interfaces of motherhood, sexuality, power and corporeality through a multifaceted interactive performance that challenges both the artists and the audience.

The “Decent Women” performance premiered in Gallery Forum Box Helsinki, Finland in 2021 and has been performed also in 2022 at Gallery Pirkko-Liisa Topelius, Helsinki, Finland.

Kuvat: Martina Näreharju ja Alex Mervereux

Moving Recollections


An exploration of connection and the lack of it, of physical distance and it’s affects on our experiences.

Moving Recollections was premiered May 2021 in an empty store space during a lockdown that closed all Helsinki’s art and cultural spaces.

The audience could follow the performances through the glass window that reflected the city’s movement and the dancers motions.

Choreography and Concept: Hanna-Maija Pääkkönen

Dance: Hanna-Maija Pääkkönen & Cano Monroy

Pictures: Katriina Haikala

Textual Motion at the Box


Textual Motion at the Box combined stories told by the audience, algorithm poetry, dance and recitation.

The piece premiered in May 2019 in Galleria Forum Box Helsinki, Finland

Choreoraphy & concept / Hanna-Maija Pääkkönen

Assisting director / Alejandro Flores Monroy

Poetry / Henrik Pathirane

Dance / Elina Valtonen, Meri-Tuuli Hirvonen, Veera Leppänen, Taru Miettinen, Hanna-Maija Pääkkönen

Recitation / Outi Ikonen, Heikki Mäkäräinen

Costumes / MInna Paussu, Minna Paussu Design

Pictures: Martina Näreharju

Womenhood // Humanhood


Solo explored social privileges and the right of women to be seen and heard in society.The work transported the viewer to being a woman through a variety of incarnations. 

The work was built from Pääkkönen’s autobiographical material; the  diaries, poems, and personal notes of moments and situations that define or limit gender.

The artist mirrored his personal experiences in broader social debates, using as an conceptual starting point the anthropologist Roberto DaMatta’s dichotomy of social universes: home vs. street, private vs. public. 

The work placed bodily experiences in these areas, thus drawing a picture of gendered social hierarchies.

The piece premiered in May 2018 in Cultural Center STOA, Helsinki, Finland.

Picture: Martina Näreharju

Choreography, dance, costume desing: Hanna-Maija Pääkkönen

Lighting desing: Milka Salonen

Sound: Juho Pääkkönen

it’s our time to listen


It is our time to listen is an experimental and ongoing duet project of two dance artists, Hanna-Maija Pääkkönen and Alejandro Flores Monroy. The works explore human contact in lived spaces.

The works built are unique in time, place and space. The venue can be a public space, a street, a neighborhood backyard, or a virtual connection. The works are based on ever-changing and updating materials that artists collect from the cities where they have lived and worked.

So far, the duo has worked with materials collected from Helsinki, Mexico City, Managua and Los Angeles. Performances have been seen  in Mexico City and Helsinki.

Pictures: Textual Motion Company & Klaus Elfving

Boxed Up!


Boxed up! dismantled and broke the stereotypes and norms of dance – gender, age, size, appearance and sexuality were challenged in the work.

In addition to professionals, the work brought a group of dance enthusiasts from diverse backgrounds, ages and identities to the stage.

Boxed Up! premiered in May 2018 inCultural Centre STOA, Helsinki, Finland

Choreography, costume: Hanna-Maija Pääkkönen

Lighting design: Milka Salonen

Sound technology: Juho Pääkkönen

Kuvat: Martina Näreharju

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